Thursday, May 24, 2012

Book 58 - The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins - the arena

I don't often read the best sellers. I find these promote themselves - everyone is reading them, everyone is talking about them, everyone is sharing them by lending their own copies or borrowing the library copy. I thought I would read this book simply because some of the grade 4 students had seen the film and were now clamoring to borrow our copies. I am so pleased I did. The dystopian view of the future is brutal so are the Hunger Games the characters take part in.

Katniss Everdeen's sister Prim's name comes up during the 'reaping' and instead of seeing her go to the National Hunger Games Katniss steps up to take her place. A skilled hunter and poacher, she has some survival skills but nothing like the cunning and brute strength she will need to survive the Games. The Hunger Games are a reality TV show in which 12 boys and 12 girls hunt and kill each other until only one survivor remains. 

This book has been challenged in school and libraries across the USA. A 'challenged' book is one that someone asks to removed from a library collection. In the blog My Hunger Games one of the team run by Jacqui explores why The Hunger Games might make it on to such a list. They provide some good links. It is interesting that the book has led to such a website - run by a group of fans. I am not one to remove challenged books from our library - students should be able to choose what they do and don't read. I am cautious about which students under grade 5 are wanting to read this book though. How do I make the call? I check with the student's teacher and check their borrowing history which should give me clue as to whether they are able to read such a book. When it comes down to it though it really is the student's choice.

Having read 'The Hunger Games' I am not keen to continue on to the other two books in the trilogy. I have other adventures to go on.

Book trailer done by Han Wang as a school project