First I need to say that maybe if hadn't read Battle Royale first then maybe I would have loved this book more. But unfortunately...more**Contains Spoilers**
First I need to say that maybe if hadn't read Battle Royale first then maybe I would have loved this book more. But unfortunately for The Hunger Games I've read Battle Royale first and loved it to death! So when I was reading The Hunger Games I just couldn't hold myself back from comparing it with the above mentioned book. I know that these two books are different in their style and the way of narration but because of their theme you just can't not to compare them.
There were more things in this book that I disliked than those ones that I liked. First, it's Katniss. She is strong, decisive and firm, but when it comes to her relationships with guys it just can't get worse! When she was debating in her head on the topic of Peeta saving her once, twice, thrice and she was always like "Why, why he saved me??!!! Oh, he wants me dead, he so wants me dead but he keeps saving me. WHY??!!" "He pretends so well to be in love with me, then he does-something-that-I-consider-strange-or-dangerous-for-me and then he saves my life! I can't decypher his actions!!!" Even before the Games, when he had helped her and after he had confessed his feelings for her, she repeatedly questioned his motives. Katniss! If he wanted you dead you would be dead! And not saved by him!!!!And the fact that until the very end of the book she was sure that he was just pretending...pfff..are you really that blind??!! And my favorite part of her not knowing which one of the boys would be blessed with her love attention just made me laugh, though it irritated me greatly as well! Decide on the spot! Don't run from one to another and back! Though I'm almost sure this will be exactly the case with her and her boys in the next books.
Then there are these Games themselves. They are broadcast, right, but...all that preparation (that actually occupied one of the biggest parts of the book!) and..hair removal??!!Really??!! It just gave me an impression that Katniss looked like a monkey before coming to the Capitol and to make her presentable enough they just had to do it! I understand it that it was made for the interviews and to present the players as best as it could be done, but..why going to such lengths if the players are going to end up dirty and totally spent during the process anyway? For the biggest effect of "before-in the process-after"?? And this preparation lasted for so long because it helped spectators to know their "movie stars" better?? Wouldn't it have been more engaging if they had been just thrown into the Arena and left there for a bigger interval of time? Then there would have been real affections, alliances, emotions, and etc. The way is was done in the book, this whole thing was waaay too staged. The reader (and even the audience) couldn't enjoy the purity of hatred and the hunger to survive because everything was prepared and worked through before the Games! Nothing new throughout the Games! Predictable emotions, predictable alliances, predictable winners...
Then there was cannon fodder (read - all the characters except for Katniss and Peeta). One or two of them stayed registered in my brain but others..And there were 22 of them. They were a great background on which the relationship between the main two characters was developing. Nothing more. I had a great pity for them, because I just couldn't understand why the author had to kill 22 men just to show two other persons in a better light?!
And the question of food. Ok, the book's title is The Hunger Games, but I thought "Hunger" here was related to something other than just FOOD! Looks like no. So much attention was devoted to food description (esp in the Capitol) that I constantly found myself at a loss - what am I reading?! A cookbook??!! Why then the main characters talk?!
And here goes a Battle Royale spoiler: (view spoiler)[And I laughed so hard when the last opponent appeared to be wearing a body armour! It soo reminded me of Battle Royale! But - it's addressed to the author - if you take the same idea just don't use the same tricks in the same places! (hide spoiler)]
I may be too harsh on this book, because it isn't actually that bad. It has some unpredictable twists and some interesting scenes, but if you want to read about pure emotions and not staged ones, I'd recommend Battle Royale. That's where the stakes really go high! ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I can't probably tell you anything about this book that you don't already know. So just a few words describing how I felt. This book is undoubtedly a d...moreI can't probably tell you anything about this book that you don't already know. So just a few words describing how I felt. This book is undoubtedly a dystopian masterpiece! Everything about this books is great: the style, the plot, the characters, the ideas. It is a frightening book, horrible in its realistic way of telling about the events that you can actually relate to. When you read it you think to yourself something like: Oh, that's exactly what we experience now!
This is a book for all times! It can't die, because as long as we leave and as long as we have such governments that we have now, it will be alive and it will breath with the full force of freedom that can't actually be reached..(less)
Everything I wanted to get from the previous, second, book I got from this one - a little bit less of Molly and a little bit more of the world. And I...moreEverything I wanted to get from the previous, second, book I got from this one - a little bit less of Molly and a little bit more of the world. And I think that I liked this book even more than I liked the first one - it's really amazing because I couldn't even imagine that the last book in the series could be by far more engaging than the first one! Small towns and villages that Fitz visited on his quest were a nice change from ever present Buckkeep in the previous volumes. I liked Buckkeep and its inhabitants, but the change that the third book brought was really refreshing! I really loved this series and I'm going to continue with other Robin Hobbs's works in which events are set in the same realm.
I must admit I'm a sucker for train stories. Alfred Hitchcock, Agatha Christie, Chris Van Allsburg - their works in literature and cinema made me love...moreI must admit I'm a sucker for train stories. Alfred Hitchcock, Agatha Christie, Chris Van Allsburg - their works in literature and cinema made me love trains and traveling by train even more. So my picking of this story was governed much by the presence of the word "train" in the name of the book.
This story is presented as a mystery, though the mystery in it is a lame one. However I chose this book not because of the mystery, but because of the Christmas spirit that this book contains. All in all, this is a nice story with one or two funny moments, sentimental, but never too much so.(less)
Finally after I had read so many reviews and blurbs on books that were supposed to be steampunk novels but actually were not, I got this book and was...moreFinally after I had read so many reviews and blurbs on books that were supposed to be steampunk novels but actually were not, I got this book and was happy to realize that this particular book wasn't only rumored to be a steampunk story but it actually was one.
This story is a great blend of history and fiction, and Scott Westerfeld combines these two concepts very skillfully. Sometimes it's even hard to see what is fiction and what is history (especially in places when the story doesn't deal with the steampunk reality).
This book wasn't really my cup of tea, though I liked it, but it was a starting point for me to begin my discovery of Westerfeld's works, and now I'm eager to read his other books.(less)
The first book was pure awesomeness, this one is also great, though I'm not nearly as thrilled as I was after finishing the first one. I would have lov...moreThe first book was pure awesomeness, this one is also great, though I'm not nearly as thrilled as I was after finishing the first one. I would have loved to see more of the world and a little bit less of Molly. Otherwise, it was very good.
Burrich, Chade, Patience, Kettricken, the Fool and Nighteyes are my absolute favorites! Fitz..well..he arouses very ambivalent feelings in me. When he wanted to hit the Fool I wanted to be in the book to protect the poor Fool and to beat some sense into Fitz! Yeah, I was really angry! And some moments when Fitz was too preoccupied with his feelings towards Molly so much, that he forgot to be cautious..in those moments I also wanted to hit him on the head (lovingly, of course :))) to make him see, that it was dangerous to let your guard down. However, I love that he is not perfect and has many traits of character that are typical of a real man.(less)
I'm totally, completely, shamefully in love with this book!
I can't even gather my wits to tell what I think of it. I just, well, a little bit obsessed...moreI'm totally, completely, shamefully in love with this book!
I can't even gather my wits to tell what I think of it. I just, well, a little bit obsessed with it - it's like your first love - you don't see any imperfections in a person you are in love with - and it's just the case with me and this book. I don't want to even admit, that this book has any flaws - to me it has none. Robin Hobb proves to be an adept at сreating characters that are easy to relate to, and the world she created in this book is more than just interesting to explore. (less)
It's 4 and a half, actually. Again Lois Lowry takes a courages step presenting a society that is rather unusual for the world of dystopian fiction. Thi...moreIt's 4 and a half, actually. Again Lois Lowry takes a courages step presenting a society that is rather unusual for the world of dystopian fiction. This book is not a dystopian novel in the true sense of the word. It's more like a utopian book, that deals with dystopian motives as well. I'm more ready to think this book is a dystopia with utopian subplot than a utopia with dystopian subplot. (Ok, that sounds confused)))
While all three books take place in the same universe and describe almost the same concept of a society - a distopian one - each of the three is set in a different village and so in these three books we have different types of communities, every next one is more interesting than the previous one.
This book introduces a society of outcasts, crippled people who know what it means to be cast aside and to be despised. These people, each of them with a unique story of theirs, finally find their home and peace in this village and nothing really threatens their peaceful existence in the beginning of the book. So at the beginning we have a utopian society. However as the events unfold, the society begins to experience some significant changes, which bring the village to a distopian state of things.
"Messenger" is a great conclusion to the series. Full of symbols, allegories and hidden meaning, it immediately pulls the reader into its universe. And I loved the ending! It reminded me somehow of the ending of "The Giver" (yeah, I even cried a bit) and though I would have loved to know more about some things, I must admit, this book is a great read!
"Gathering Blue" is a refreshing dystopian novel with an engrossing plot and well-rounded characters. Presenting a new kind of a dystopian society, it...more"Gathering Blue" is a refreshing dystopian novel with an engrossing plot and well-rounded characters. Presenting a new kind of a dystopian society, it introduces the reader to a new kind of a society: it's not as progressive and sophisticated as those ones described in many dystopian books. In this book Lois Lowry strayed off the beaten path and it made the book even more interesting to read.
It was artistically written - really, not only dealt the narration with artistic issues throughout the book, but it itself had outstanding artistic power over the reader.
It's not as great as "The Giver" (which is the first part of the trilogy), but good nonetheless. A little bit weaker, but still very enjoyable.(less)
Some time ago I was looking for a good dark fantasy novel and was recommended this book. However, I was a bit disappointed with it for not being what I...moreSome time ago I was looking for a good dark fantasy novel and was recommended this book. However, I was a bit disappointed with it for not being what I was looking for. It's only my feelings and thoughts, but it's hard for me to see this book in the light of dark fantasy. The main characters of this book are meant to be vile persons, instead they look like a company of old friends, who sometimes are more human than their good opponents.
I can't even say, whether I liked the main characters or not. I was rather indifferent to their actions and feelings, I guess. Only the Ten Who Were Taken interested me. And they were mysterious enough to keep me reading.
So I'm done with this series. At least for now.(less)
With this book I came all the way from "What a bore!" to "Hmm..it's getting more and more interesting" and finally up to "Wow! Didn't expect THIS comi...moreWith this book I came all the way from "What a bore!" to "Hmm..it's getting more and more interesting" and finally up to "Wow! Didn't expect THIS coming! Love it!". This book is a wonderful example of what a good fantasy book should be like. Is has everything: the characters that spring from the pages alive and vivid, the world building, which is rich, complex and colorful, and the plot that is layered, full of details and really enjoyable to find yourself in.
So why only 4 stars? The main problem that I had in the beginning of the book was too many characters! It felt like I was thrown into the whirlwind with too many people spinning around me in circles, faster and faster with every other circle. There were a few Black Brothers, the Stark family and their servants, the Lannisters and their surrounding and others and others around these two families...and (how could I forget?) there were also Viserys and Daenerys Targaryen. It really threw me off balance! At first I tried to memorize who was who, then I just gave up! And it took me some time to get used to this whole range of different characters.
The next thing that disturbed me was alikeness of this book and Robin Hobb's Farseer Trilogy (which I enjoyed greatly!) It may be just me, but it seems these books have some things in common. Judge for yourself: a bastard - check! dragons (which were net alive in the beginning of the story) - check! a sharp-tongued not-like-others character - check! a wolf-bond - check! I'm sure, these things are just a coincidence, but they made it hard for me to like this book more than I liked it.
These are the main reasons why I'm giving this book only 4 stars. This being said, I must admit, that I totally loved how George R.R. Martin "disposed" of his characters! No one is safe as long as they find themselves in Martin's hands! And you can't be sure which one of the characters will make it to the end! Usually authors just cling to their characters to the very end, not wishing to be parted from them and not wishing to bring some fresh blood in their books, It's like their constant that they are afraid to lose, but usually this way of acting only makes a book predictable and dull. I'm definitely gonna continue with the series! The ending of this volume was too promising for me to forget about this series!(less)
This book is exactly what a good book for children should be! Written in such a way, that even adult readers can't bring themselves to put it aside th...moreThis book is exactly what a good book for children should be! Written in such a way, that even adult readers can't bring themselves to put it aside this book presents an engrossing tale about three gnomes who set out on a quest to find their brother.
An audio version of this book is even more magnificent. The narrator skilfully wields his voice making you believe that it's not a usual man you are listening to, but different characters from the book who have suddenly come alive. It's like a good one-man show that won't leave you cold.
This truly is "a Story for the Young in Heart".(less)
I was really, really, really disappointed in this story. It was so not what I expected that I found it difficult to come to any conclusion regarding m...moreI was really, really, really disappointed in this story. It was so not what I expected that I found it difficult to come to any conclusion regarding my impressions.
First of all, I expected it to be a science fiction novel. Yes, it is a science fiction novel, but it has so little science in it, that it is really hard for me to call it that way. It looked to me as though I was fooled and was given a book that, having a big lettered title 'science fiction' written over the title page, turned out to be an ordinary coming-of-age story.
Second, TOO MUCH SEX TALK!!! Guess, the biggest part of every coming-of-age book has to be dedicated to this thing. But, gah, is it really everything that can be used in order to create a believable atmosphere in a book that deals with growing up teenagers?! And here we should return to the first point - can't a science fiction novel, a dystopia, have anything more to sparkle the reader's interest?! I understand, that it was made so that we could easily believe in "clones also have feelings, and life, and the right to life". But sometimes it seemed like the whole book was centered around the main characters' sex life and everything that was close to it. Didn't they have other problems while they were growing up?! And not just "who is with who"?
Third, and this question just couldn't disappear from my head, why didn't the main characters just leave the place??!! It wasn't actually explained in the book (as far as I remember) what was going on in other places - in the rest of the world. In the whole world. If they wanted to be together - why not leave??!! Why not struggle??!Pff..and though I didn't care about the characters I wanted them to fight for their rights, but they seemed so focused on their relationships and each other that they just didn't care about the whole "finding a way out" thing. Yeah, they tried a bit in the end, but their efforts were rather feeble and from the very beginning of this 'fight' it was clear that they were to lose.
If you are going to read this book and don't expect it to have much to do with the science fiction genre, then you may like it. If you are looking for a real and full blooded science fiction novel you may as well look elsewhere. (less)
What a nice read! The best thing for a long Halloween evening! When I started reading..well, actually listening to this book, I didn't expect it to hav...moreWhat a nice read! The best thing for a long Halloween evening! When I started reading..well, actually listening to this book, I didn't expect it to have anything to do with two great holidays - not that the narration is centered around them - but they are closely interconnected with the first part of the story and it makes it, the story, I mean, a lot more fantastic because it brings into your life and reading experience bits of magic, that accompany those two holidays.
The male protagonist is awesome! Strong and old beyond his years. And the way his adventures and that hidden world were described...Clive Barker is indeed a master of picturesque and at the same time spooky descriptions!(less)