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A novel by Suzanne Collins
(2020, Scholastic Books)

A Hunger Games novel

At the approach of the tenth Hunger Games, Cornelius Snow is chosen as a mentor and guide to a candidate from District 12.


+ -- First reading (hardcover)
July 14th to September 12th, 2022


I had a lot of trouble getting into this book, not just as a prequel to the Hunger Games novels, but as a story itself. As troubling as it sounds, I was bored through a lot of it. There were a lot of interesting things, like the origin of the Hunger Games, Dr Gaul’s hard-line attitude and actions against those who crossed her, and the chaos that still reigned ten years after the war. But Coriolanus wasn’t one of them. His constant need to question himself and everything around him grew annoying quickly, and never let up. While he seemed to have friends among the other mentors, I didn’t see it through any of their interactions. Sejanus was used as the main foil against him, but unfortunately I wasn’t engaged by that character, either. Even Lucy Gray, who grew into the best character in the book, started out rather flat, even as I think she was supposed to be inspirational. It was interesting to see the Hunger Games from the other point of view, though, as it’s mostly boring bits highlighted by intense moments. The third part of the book had some intriguing moments, but didn’t really go anywhere either, never rising to give us the passion that I think was needed. His cold-heartedness at the end didn’t require the long journey it took to get there, as he decides he wouldn’t be able to live off the land after less than a day, when the opportunity presents itself.


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