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[personal profile] krpalmer
There were far fewer "sea days" on my cruise just past than last year, and that meant less time reading books signed out of the ship's library. From a certain number of perspectives, I'm sure this ought to be seen as a good thing. Still, I did look into the library on board, and happened to notice all three "Hunger Games" books on its shelves. To be a little delicate, I suppose I was amused by the thought the expected sort of demographic for those books was thin on board. Still, the thought of making a beginning at seeing what those books were about did come to mind, and I signed out the first book and got through it during the voyage.

I found the book interesting. Part of that might have been for no more complicated a reason than that it was "speculative" as opposed to the unabashed fantasy of other popular books for comparable audiences of late. Of course, the "speculation" was an Earthbound dystopia with hints of environmental catastrophe in the past, but I did take some note of how the privileged voyeurs of the Capitol still had high technology, having worried about the grim weight of other recent dystopias with smug post-collapse theocracies in charge. Still, finding a way to avoid dystopias seems more productive to me than just hoping they won't be the end of everything. The "first-person present tense" seemed a little unusual, but I soon had the feeling it gave a sense of immediacy without giving away that the narrator was safe after the fact and writing everything down or having to end up with the ambiguity of a work being abandoned. It might have been, though, that I was most interested in the initial scene-setting, and one things got to the deadly combat I had the ambiguous sense it was "familiar enough." I did find myself thinking of how I haven't yet read "Battle Royale" in translation.

Even before then, though, I might have been wondering a bit about "romance," or the simulation thereof, getting folded into the story, having dwelt a bit of late on how I do seem to find that a little tedious (and yet it took a bit of effort to remember I had told myself I was more annoyed when fans focus on nothing but than when a story unabashedly adopts it)... but after a while, I began to think there was something amusing, and perhaps even a little "subversive," about the female character trying to take survival into her own unaided hands while the male character "plays to the crowd." I suppose I wound up certain other people have thought of this too, but it did help add to the feeling I would be interested in reading the two following books... one of these days.

To add one more comment, I suppose I did find myself taking a somehow odd notice of all the careful descriptions of food... but, as the title said, it was "the hunger games."

Date: 2012-09-19 11:29 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] thrush
I am becoming more and more interested in this series. As it was initially described to me it just sounded horribly genre-bound, and I have had a number of friends who strongly disliked it... but I also have had a number of friends who equally strongly recommend it. Your review seems more nuanced than either pole.

all the careful descriptions of food
It might be silly of me, but this is the most intriguing aspect of all....
Edited Date: 2012-09-19 11:30 pm (UTC)

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