I am, like many, many others, a huge fan of The Hunger Games films. I love the actors, the cinematography, the intensity. But what I love most about the movies is the concept. I think it’s an intriguing idea that can really catch people’s attention. And of course, that concept originated in The Hunger Games book series, so I figured that if I enjoyed the movies, I would also like the books.
Well, I finally got around to reading them, and wow. I was blown away. I know people always say the book is better than the movie (even when the movie is really good), but to say that about The Hunger Games would be an understatement. I think the films do the books justice, but you can’t really say you’ve experienced The Hunger Games until you’ve read the books.
It’s just a completely different experience reading the books from watching the movies. Not only is the medium different, but the entire feel of the story is different. Instead of seeing the events of the story from a third-person point of view as in the films, the books are all told in the first person and narrated by Katniss, the main character. We get to see her whole experience—from growing up in the impoverished District 12 under the harsh rule of the Capitol, to her father’s death, to her experience participating in the 74th annual Hunger Games and on—from her perspective.
I think that’s my favorite thing about the books. Jennifer Lawrence did an excellent job portraying Katniss in the movies, but even the best acting can’t compare to being able to read a character’s thoughts, to understand everything that’s going on behind the scenes. In the books, we get a better idea of how Katniss really feels about the world she grows up in, her intentions as she tries to save her family while protecting herself, and all the emotions and confusion she feels along the way. I think this results in not only a more accurate portrayal of the story, but a deeper connection between the reader and Katniss.
Of course, the books also have plot points that had to be cut out of the movie, too. There were several characters—for example, Madge, the red-headed Avox, and Darius—who really added to the books but weren’t necessary enough to be included in the movies. The books and movies don’t contradict each other on anything important, but reading the books along with watching the movies really does enrich the experience and help the reader understand the full world that Katniss lives in.
I would definitely recommend The Hunger Games books to people who have seen and enjoyed the movies and to people who just want to pick up a good fiction book. The books are written at a level that teens and preteens can understand, but they’re certainly not boring for adults, either. If you’ve seen the movies, give the books a try. You may find that they help you enjoy the story even more. If you’ve never experienced anything Hunger Games-related before, you’re missing out. Check out The Hunger Games books, and then let me know what you think of them. Thanks for reading. Until next week, friends!
The Hunger Games is a young adult book trilogy comprised of The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay. They are written by Suzanne Collins. Film adaptations of The Hunger Games and Catching Fire have been released, and the first in a two-part adaption of Mockingjay will be released in theaters this November.