In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before-and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.
This was a great book. The characters were all so very likeable, especially Katniss, who has taken care of putting food on the table for her family ever since she was 11 years old and is now fighting for her life in the Hunger Games. She's one tough girl whom you can't help but admire. Several times while in the middle of reading, I found myself cheering her on, saying "woohoo", or even chuckling out loud.
The author did a really good job setting the pace of the story; it was chock full of action right from the get go and there weren't really any slow parts. The only teeny weeny thing I didn't care for so much, even though I understood it's necessity to the story, was the killing and eating of the wild rabbits. Those who know me know I have two pet rabbits whom I love dearly so even though I recognize the difference between hunting wild rabbits for game and domesticated rabbits as pets, that was probably the only part of the story I didn't love. But hey, I was the same way with Lord of the Rings too. :)
I am soooo looking forward to reading Catching Fire, the next book in the Hunger Games series!!