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Fashion Book: The Hunger Games

2011 June 16

I finished reading The Hunger Games early last week. I read this book for maybe all the wrong reasons–mainly because I was tired of being left out of conversations about other popular books I’d avoided despite their vast crowd appeal (ahem…Harry Potter). I was afraid that like Harry Potter and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, I’d be disappointed instead of drawn in like everyone else I knew.

However, I was pleasantly surprised with The Hunger Games. Suzanne Collins does an excellent job at portraying Katniss, a strong female hero who’s almost too perfect–but not so perfect that we hate her. We actually kind of love her. She’s resilient and brave and talented and beautiful, yes, but she’s also stubborn, oblivious, and seems almost patently unable to accept others’ affections for her.

Admittedly, the concept of teenagers killing each other for sport and entertainment nearly stopped me from reading the book as well. However, this is another area that Collins excels with–she is able to draw the reader into the action while also amping up the futuristic and nonrealistic aspects of this scenario. So even though you’re fascinated by what’s going on in the arena, your brain is telling you it’s not real.

I haven’t dived into the next book yet, but I’m looking forward to the rest of the series…and being in on the conversation, for once.

One of the facets of the book I found myself enjoying (perhaps too much) was the descriptions of the “tributes'” outfits. Beyond the game of primal survival, the tributes (which is what the participants in the games are called) are made into celebrities before the games officially begin–they are even assigned a team of stylists to make them over and style their looks. The book emphasizes the importance of clothing and style on image and public perception, which is a hugely fascinating concept.

While she’s not a girly girl in the least, Katniss finds herself in some pretty spectacular outfits during her stint in the games. Due to her stylist’s concept for the opening ceremony, she was known as “the girl who was on fire.” I tried to recreate her look for one of the big scenes in the book (trying not to give too much away!) where her look must illustrate a message of innocence and purity, but also one of her fiery nature.  Here’s what I came up with:
The Hunger Games

Have you ever read a book because everyone else is? Have you read The Hunger Games? What did you think?

7 Responses Post a comment
  1. June 16, 2011

    I am always out of sync with what other people are reading. If I had a nickel for every person who told me I “had” to read The Kite Runner…(I still haven’t.) So I haven’t read The Hunger Games either.

  2. Amanda permalink
    June 16, 2011

    Ahhhh! I face this dilemma all.the.time. I second you and Patience on Henry Potter, Dragon Tattoo, and Kite Runner.

    And, as a middle school teacher, its even harder. I still haven’t read Twighlight, any of the Percy Jackson, Diary of a Wimpy Kid or, most recently….The Hunger Games.

    You might have talked me into this one….but I think I need to be reading grown-up books in the precious time I may have this summer.

  3. June 16, 2011

    I am obsessed with this trilogy. I LOVE the Hunger Games. I have read it too many times to count. I also have the audiobook. Like I said obsessed. I must admit that the summary stopped me from reading the book more than once. It just seemed too far fetched. However, once I got through that first chapter I couldn’t put it down.

    Collins does a great job at bringing you back to reality. There are too many things we take for granted in life and I think The Hunger Games does a great job at reminding us of what’s really important. But I also love how she shows that not even a feral tribute girl is immune to the wonders a beautiful dress can do for you. I’m looking forward to seeing her outfits on screen. I bet they’re gonna be wonderful.

    You’re gonna love Catching Fire!! I can’t wait for you to read it and report back!!

  4. Mallory permalink
    June 17, 2011

    I am so glad you liked this book. I was afraid you would be the first person I knew who didn’t like it, to be honest. But the difference between these books and the other books that come up in conversation (Harry Potter, Twilight, Percy Jackson, etc.) is that these books are incredibly well written, and they deal with adult themes rather than magic or whimsy.

    I hope you continue with the series, because as far as trilogy arcs go, Collins has it nailed. I am honestly jealous of anyone I see reading these books on the train because I think about how exciting it was to read through them the first time. Collins’s characters are lovely and flawed, and the world she creates is harsh, real, and fantastic all at the same time. Keep reading, because it gets even better. Well, even worse I guess would be more accurate.

    In other news, I wish that I was capable of wearing yellow because that dress is adorable.

  5. June 19, 2011

    I haven’t read this or the rest of the trilogy but I lovelovelove this outfit!

  6. June 19, 2011

    sorry that added NOTHING to the conversation XD but I just had to declare my love.

  7. Molly permalink
    February 12, 2012

    Wow. I was barely able to put this book down for a second after the first few pages got me completely hooked. Normally it takes a week to read a book, but now I read this in 24 hours. Suzanne Collins here has an immediacy to it that, when combined with the very dramatic life-or-death plot, is incredibly compelling. It’s entertaining, and incredibly disturbing all at once. They say great art leaves you changed after you experience it… and this book definitely did that. Suzanne Collins has, with one amazing work, propelled herself onto my top shelf.

    Have a nice day,

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