Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before - and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.
(summary from back cover)
I've been hitting myself in the head ever since the time I finished this book. When I recieved an ARC of it in August I knew nothing of the book, and didn't pick it up until now-when buzz started to swirl around about it. And by waiting to read it, I passed up the chance for a signed copy of the book that Scholastic was offering to any person who recieved an ARC and submitted a review of it to them by a certain date-a date which passed long ago. URGH!!! I'm so amazingly angry with myself because this is one fantastic book. It is written superbly, it grabs you immediately, and it has any element you could ever want in it; romance, action, and suspense all bundled into one heck of a book. From the first sentence, I was not able to put it down until I finished. It's been quite a while since I've been able to truthfully say that about a book, but I can say that about The Hunger Games without a doubt. And while the plot was fast moving and drew you in, the characters and the imagery made it that much better. I came to completely understand and sympathize with Katniss, as she was just a regular girl like me who was forced into the most unfortunate of circumstances and had to decide whether to trust her instincts or her morals. And Peeta Mellark is probably my all time favorite guy character in a book. I'm completely in love with him. I think he trumps just about any other desirable male book character out there. I was pretty close to crying at the end...and let me just say that I am sooo glad that there's going to be another book in the series. I have to see what happens between Katniss and Peeta and Gale. The author really knows how to manipulate a reader which she definitely showed at the end when we were left with that enormous cliff-hanger. I'll be the first in line at the bookstore to buy the next book when it comes out. And if you haven't read The Hunger Games, please please please get a copy by any means you have available to you. It just might be one of my favorite books of 2008.