Shannon Stacey

The Hunger Games Trilogy

The Hunger Games Trilogy BoxsetThe Hunger Games Trilogy Boxset by Suzanne Collins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I never got around to reading this series, though I bought the bundle back in September when it was on sale, until I started seeing the trailers for the movie. Then I saw an extended trailer at the theater and had to read it right now. I’ll be going to see the movie, so I knew I had to read the books first.

Hunger Games: I thought the first book was outstanding. Very compelling and somewhat horrifying, but the pacing and narrative voice sucked me in. As the mother of 11 and 16 year old boys, I did catch myself a few times imagining the Tributes as older, but I stopped doing that after a while. I couldn’t put it down until I found out how it ended.

Catching Fire: This book was mostly a bridge between the first and third books, but still a good read in its own right. One thing that kept me uneasy throughout was the love triangle. I’m not a fan of love triangles anyway, but this one seemed like more of an emotional knot than most. When I got to the end, i was so glad I had the bundle and could just turn the page to the next book. I would have been so mad if I’d read it when it first released and had to wait for the third book.

Mockingjay: It fell apart a little with the third book. One thing I noticed as I was reading was that, because Katniss was our only POV character, a lot of the action took place off the page. We, as readers, had to sit around and wait with her to get a recap of the important events. It was still an engrossing read, though. And then came…the end.


The death that occurs at the end took a big bite out of my enjoyment of the series as a whole. Because of Katniss’s primary motivation throughout the entire series, that death was the true ending and it wasn’t a happy one. I think it only served as a way to resolve the love triangle and I was disappointed, even though we get a happily ever after epilogue for Katniss.

I’m still giving the Hunger Games trilogy has a whole four stars, though, because it sucked me in and didn’t let me go until the very last page. Since I don’t read YA and I don’t read post-apocalyptic fiction and I rarely read first person, that was quite a feat.

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Boxset on Amazon: The Hunger Games Trilogy

4 comments to “The Hunger Games Trilogy”

  1. Kristi
      · March 18th, 2012 at 4:51 pm · Link


    So, I tried to find this article I read after Mockingjay came out. I was SO upset after the ending of that book. The death. The outcome of the love triangle. The hopelessness of the ending. I WAS SO UPSET.

    Honestly, anything that had me that upset rates 5 stars just for evoking that much emotion – but the first book was the best.

    ANYWAY. I can’t find it now due to all the press and news of the movies but it was from a prominent UK newspaper and it had a nice interview with Suzanne Collins. Basically she said she wrote this book to portray what WAR was really like. She said she had grown up with her father in Europe and war torn areas and either saw, or heard stories from her father about war and she wanted to portray to teenagers that war is not pretty, it doesn’t end well, and it basically sucks.

    So I felt better about the books after I read why she ended it that way. I wish I could find that article. I will have to search a bit more later.

    BTW, I was in Target yesterday and saw your paperbacks, the covers are SO pretty in person! Your art department was awesome.

  2. Kristi
      · March 18th, 2012 at 4:54 pm · Link

    Why do I always find things after I say I can’t find them? Gah!


    On a more serious note, your last eight novels have closely examined the effects of war and violence on children. Why are you so obsessed with that topic?

    That would definitely go back to my childhood. My father was career Air Force. He was in the Air Force for 30-some years. He was also a Vietnam veteran. He was there the year I was six. Beyond that, though, he was a doctor of political science, a military specialist, and a historian; he was a very intelligent man. And he felt that it was part of his responsibility to teach us, his children, about history and war. When I think back, at the center of all this is the question of what makes a necessary war—at what point is it justifiable or unavoidable?

    << A few more paragraphs that talk about it.

  3. Carin
      · March 18th, 2012 at 7:44 pm · Link

    OK, I skipped most of your review because I’ve only read Hunger Games so far. (My kids are on spring break and I knew I’d be super book cranky if I tried to read Catching Fire instead of taking care of them!)

    I still wanted to chime in and say I did the same thing! I bought the ebooks over a year ago and some of my kids read them. I never got around to it until I saw the trailer. Then I read and was amazed! And I told my husband he’d love it and he did. Now we’ve already got tickets to a Saturday afternoon showing of the movie. I can’t wait!

  4. Shannon
      · March 19th, 2012 at 5:40 pm · Link

    That’s an interesting take on the ending. I guess when you take a teenage girl and make her this big hero with a heroic cause and this exciting revolution, the death definitely brings home the “war sucks” message.

    BTW, I was in Target yesterday and saw your paperbacks, the covers are SO pretty in person! Your art department was awesome.

    Thanks! They did such an amazing job with them and I love looking at them on my bookshelf. (Undeniably Yours is my favorite.)

    And I’m not sure if I’ll get to the theater to see it Friday or if I’ll have to wait until next week, but I’m definitely going to see it.

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