Tag Archives: Suzanne Collins

My Money, My Choices

20 Apr

Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of free books (well, I think it’s a lot). I’m also a big fan of my local library and an assertive gift recipient. I’m also an enormous tightwad. So when I decide to spend my hard-earned moolah on books, you know I really mean it. It’s kind of like splashing out on your favourite band’s CD even though you’ll probably just listen to it on your computer/ipod/some other mp3 player that I don’t know about. The point is, you support them. And handing over your debit card to a real human being perversely adds to the excitement of listening to their new offering.

At the moment, I plan on spending my pounds on these books:

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins (third in her trilogy of highly addictive, wonderfully violent YA books).  When it comes out on August 24, natch. Not that I’ve ever seen the countdown clock.

The World Without Us, by Alan Weisman. My non-fiction tastes, weirdly, coincide with my young adult fiction tastes. The more apocalyptic, the better. The sci-fi-like science book promises to detail what would happen to the world minus the humans, but with all our crap.

The Collected Stories of Lorrie Moore, by you know who. Somehow, without ever having read her stuff, I’m sure I will love it. And I could use a short story fix.

You didn't see this.

Hungry For More

9 Jan

Excuse the bad pun in the headline (and the one coming up), but I devoured Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games and its follow-up Catching Fire over the holidays. I hadn’t realized that the third one wasn’t out until later this year, so now I just have to sit and wait like a chump.

The Hunger Games is set in the near future, after some never explained (but juicy nuclear-sounding) disaster. Dystopian fiction pretty much always gets a pass with me, especially that of the YA variety (The City of Ember series by Jeanne DuPrau, The Giver by Lois Lowry, almost anything by Monica Hughes, but especially Invitation to the Game).

I’m kind of late to the Hunger Games party, but if you haven’t heard of it, it’s a bit of a twist on a Greek myth where the Athenians are forced to pay tribute to Crete by sending their children to be killed by the Minotaur. Then add some Battle Royale, because the kids have to kill each other until there’s only one standing. Then add some American Idol/X Factor/Survivor, because it’s also a reality show! 

The first one was a better read because it’s all about the skim-worthy plot*, which is really what this series has going for it. The political reasoning behind the action didn’t always make sense, and some of the descriptive writing didn’t always gel with me either. But I had to slow down to even notice these issues, and that hardly ever happened because it was all just SO EXCITING.

There was an article in The Guardian last month about a parent’s search for “anti-princess” books suited for young future feminists. I’m not a huge fan of the overly prescriptive “Jenny doesn’t like pink and can run and play and SO CAN YOU!” books, but it made me think about books with a kick-ass heroine, that both boys and girls could easily identify with. The arrow-slinging, boyfriend-slinging Katniss definitely fits the bill.  

* Skim-worthy is a good thing as far as I’m concerned. I think the mark of a good book is when I can’t remember the last third because I read it too fast.