I just read The Hunger Games

I had no intention of reading this book but a librarian recommended it to my 12 year old daughter. She told the librarian that her dad (me) had seen the movie and though it was pretty violent. The librarian persisted and said that the book was written so that the violent “scenes” weren’t overly descriptive. I would have much preferred if she said, “Oh, well I guess you need to listen to your dad. Maybe he will let you read it when you are a little older.” I guess that’s too much to ask in today’s world.

So anyway my initial impression is that the book is dark and depressing and introduces moral dilemmas that a 12 year old shouldn’t deal with unless guided by an adult, if at all. After reading the book you feel disturbed and angry which is probably the author’s desired effect. If this had been the only book in the series I would probably just say “no” to my daughter’s question. I have read a short synopsis if the other books in the series and now I feel that I may have to read them before making up my mind.

I have this running joke with my kids. When they are watching a movie and when the movie gets to the point where it looks like all hope is lost and the the hero is defeated, I say, “The end”. I get met with “Daaaaad” because they know the story is not completely told and you need to see the end to know what kind of story it will be. So I guess it’s on to the next book in the series for me.

Judgement is withheld for the moment with the exception of saying that while some points of the book were weaker than others, it does get you into the mindset of being outraged at injustice. I often think that there are so many outrageous things occurring today yet people don’t seem outraged. Maybe that is the message of this book and series.

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