Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Hunger Games

There has been a lot of talk about The Hunger Games. The Books have been on the Best Sellers list for many years running, the Movie Premier was one of the biggest of all time! And yes, I was there, along side my Daughters.

My son's Girlfriend at the time, Olivia, first told me about these books, about how good they are & that I should read them. Young girls that worked for me told me about them as well. So I did what any real Book Lover would do, I looked into them. And thought No Thank You. They are not the type of Books I usually like to read. I don't do Sci Fi. They are set in the future. The concept seemed to far out there for me. There was a lot of Buzz about these Books. Everyone was talking about them, Blogs were written about them. Yet, every time I looked into them, I decided against reading them. I know me & I know Books, and they weren't my "usual type" so no matter how many times I heard "you have got to read The Hunger Games!" "They are so good!" I never picked them up. Then one day I came walking out of a convenience store & a saw a grown man (probably in his mid to late 30's) pumping gas into his car with The Hunger Games in his hands. He literally couldn't put the Book down long enough just to get gas! And I thought That's it! I'm reading those Books! We had the first Book because someone had given it to my girls as a Birthday gift. I read it. It's a very easy read, and very intense, I couldn't put it down. We went to Half Price Books where I picked up the second & third Books in the series, and read them, one right after the other. My daughter Lexi read them next & just as quickly.

Now some in the Christian world are criticizing the Books and the Movie. All they've heard is they are about children killing other children for sport. But, that isn't it at all. There is so much more to it. And if you look deeper, there are moral lessons to be learned in The Hunger Games. (Spoiler Alert) It is set in the future, in a post apocalyptic world. What was formerly the United States is now Panem, made up of the Capital, which runs the 12 outlying districts. There had once been an uprising & the Government now controls it's people by forcing all 12 districts to choose one Boy & one Girl, age 12 - 18, to participate in The Hunger Games. A child's name is put into the drawing once every year from the time they are 12. A child can choose to enter their name more times to buy food for their family. The main character of the Book is Katniss, a girl from District 12, the coal mining district, who lost her father in a mining accident. But not before he taught her how to sneak out of her district (which is Illegal) and how to survive and hunt for food. She and her best friend, a boy named Gale, the oldest children in each of their fatherless families, hunt together, providing food for their families & selling their kills to others for things they need to survive. Both of who's names are entered into the Hunger Games drawing multiple times. But it is Katniss' little 12 year old sister, Prim, who doesn't know survival the way Katniss does, who's name is drawn. So Katniss volunteers to take her sister's place in the games. Because she has spent her life protecting her little sister.

The Tributes (those chosen to participate in the Hunger Games) are taken to the Capital, trained & placed in an Arena, what is inside the arena, is any ones guess. It could be Jungle, Desert, Frozen Tundra. Where they must survive & yes, fight, while the world watches, until there is only one left standing. The winner & their family receives Food, comfort, and acclaim beyond their wildest imagination for their entire lifetime. This book will outrage you, that a government could do this to their people, that people would go along with it. (Though they do eventually rebel in the other books.) There are very touching moments, turns & twists, as well as suspense, violence, sacrifice, and even a love triangle between Katniss, her best friend Gale, and Peeta, the boy chosen from her district to go into the Hunger Games with her. I am Team Peeta! :)

My daughters & I, starting with the Twilight Movies, like to do our Mother/Daughter thing of going to the Midnight Movie Premiers. We were very Excited about The Hunger Games Premier! I took 2 vacation days off work, and let the girls miss a day of school! (Don't tell anyone!) Their BFF Brianna came with us.

Having bought our tickets as soon as they went on sell, I went up there at about 2:00 om the afternoon, armed with a Diet Coke, a lawn chair, and a good Book. The girls came up as soon as they got out of school.

Now waiting in line for up to 10 hours, might not sound like much fun, but it really is! The girls did some homework, saw some friends waiting in line to hang out with too. We took turns walking around the Mall. John brought us up a Pizza!

My good friend Tammy was there too, and we were, until later in the evening, about the oldest ones in line! :) Die Hard Moms! (The things we do for our Daughters!) :)

This was a girl in line across from us! Being much older than she is, believe me, I felt like doing what she was doing! :)

We ran into our friend & former Pastor, Jeff, in line as well, wearing one of the best shirts of the night! :) One thing very different from the Twilight movies, is there are A LOT more boys in line! For Twilight, it's mostly girls. The Hunger Games shocked me with how many, not only boys, but grown men! I saw Big Burly men in Hunger Games Tshirts! :)

Two of my Beautiful Nieces, Alarie & Rachel, came to our side of town to join us for the Premier! Then crashed at our house before driving the hour back to their side of town.

I also saw a friend, Patty, I hadn't seen in a while. We let her Daughter in line. (Behind us, of course!) :) who sat with us for the movie!

Lexi loved it when she was told by countless people in line that she looked like Katniss! That was after all the idea behind the outfit! :) There were more girls with side braids then I have ever seen in my life!

Yes, you will cringe reading these books at the possibilities of what people can do & force others to do. As someone who can't watch Boxing or UFC fights without getting a stomach ache, you can see why these would not appear to be my kind of Books. But the larger themes of Good winning over evil, of sacrificing for those you love & for what is right, and that every life is precious, is what The Hunger Games are really about!


LaughandLearn said...

This was a great post. Loved reading it.

Kristen said...

Just stopped over from the SITS girls. I was also really hesitant about reading these books because they didn't appeal to me. I finally gave in and thought they were great. I love the message of sacrificing for loved ones, etc. too. I can't wait to see the movie!