This week is the second leg of our month-long THG Read-A-Thon. And for this week we were honored to have with us a fan organization for Hunger Games fanatics based in the Philippines. Let us all welcome, The Hunger Games Philippines!
WHY WE LOVE THE HUNGER GAMES
By Niegel Simon of Hunger Games Philippines
As the premiere date of the long-awaited movie, The Hunger Games, draws near, fans of the franchise are becoming more and more insatiable. On the other hand, bystanders can’t help but be swept away by the mania spanning the world. It’s hard to believe that a book trilogy could have such a profound effect on everyone. Then again, this is THE HUNGER GAMES. Anything is possible.
What sets the Hunger Games apart from other books on the shelves is the amount of thought, emotion and effort Collins had woven into the story. Right off the bat, we are hooked in by the premise of the book. True enough, it is hard to ignore a book wherein children are selected by lottery to participate in a televised death match.
To make matters worse, (or better, depends on how you view it) readers are able to experience this “firsthand” through the eyes of a poor, emotionally scarred, sixteen year-old, Katniss Everdeen. It is through this journey with Katniss that we experience the depth of true pain and grief. In the same way, it is through Katniss’ eyes that we see how hope strives to exist in such dire situations; how hope, as well as courage and strength, can be gained from the people around us.
Furthermore, it is through Katniss’ story that Collins so artfully shows us the reality of our current situation; how we may eventually take the same path that lead to the world of The Hunger Games. If we continue to advocate war; if we continue to exercise injustice and discrimination in our society; if we allow ourselves to be indifferent to the plight of our brethren; if we cannot be passionate about anything anymore, then how are we different from the opressors- the Capitol?
With this, we are given many reasons to love The Hunger Games. For some, it is the pure adrenaline and suspense. Others are into it for the romance. Others still enjoy its dark themes. Then there are the people who are simply looking for the companionship these characters provide that allows them to come alive. All these reasons are valid, of course. In fact, I fell in love with the trilogy for all these reasons. But what I love most about THG is how it empowers the youth. Just like it empowers Katniss Everdeen.
By classifying this as YA literature, Collins expresses her belief that we are worth reaching out to. While other adults believe that the youth should not be exposed to such atrocities Suzanne Collins laid out the cold hard facts about war and life. Not because she wants to scare us, but because she believes the youth of today could make a significant difference. In other words, she gives us the same amount of respect she would to adults (if not more). We are not merely readers. We are the catalysts for change. And we are worth giving that responsibility.
Reading The Hunger Games is a personal journey for everyone: teenagers and adults alike. Consequently, we each have our own reasons to love the book. Your opinion may be different from another but one thing is certain. Once you pick it up, there is no turning back.
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