The end of 2011 and the beginning of 2012 found me reading the Steve Jobs bio by Walter Isaacson. Why does this matter? Because, I normally don’t do non-fiction… just like I normally don’t do young adult. However, after my favorite author, one of my favorite publishers, and numerous other people told me that I needed to read it, I figured why not? So I once again stepped out of my comfort zone and waded into waters not seen since Jr. High. And I’m glad I did.
I cracked open this book (OK fine… I swiped open my iPad) and did not stop until the end. This book quickly grabs you and doesn’t let go until about the last fourth. I’ll get to that later. The first three fourths of this book I flew through it like Katniss at a buffet. This being a YA book I didn’t expect the amount of violence to be what it was. It wasn’t gratuitous or anything but it was definitely was there. If you don’t know the premise of this book that could only mean one thing; you were born yesterday. Think ‘Lord of the Flies’ meets ‘The Running Man’ meets any high school in America.
It’s a murderous game of cat and mouse and you only have to survive. That’s it. Oh yeah, you must compete against twenty-three other kids, on TV, with the odds stacked against you, on little to no water and food. Piece of cake, right? The first ¾ of this book is a fast paced, fun, bloody adventure. The unfortunate thing for this book is that when the numbers of kids start to dwindle, so does the action. It turns into an introspective of Katniss and it doesn’t have the same magic as the beginning. Now, I did finish it because it WAS good but I hated that it went that direction. I think that reader of YA books will still (obviously with the numbers this series is putting up) enjoy this series, but from a reader who needs a book finish as strong as it starts, I wasn’t completely taken.