Review: The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Series: The Hunger Games
Pages: 374
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Fantasy, Sci-fi, Romance
My Rating: 2.5/5
★ ★ ½ ☆ ☆


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“Katniss, 16, takes her sister’s place in the televised annual Hunger Games, competing against Peeta, the boy who gave them bread to survive after their father died. The cruel Capitol forces each of 12 districts to submit a boy and girl 12-18, to fight to the death. Only one can survive and be rewarded. President Snow manipulates behind the scenes.”

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Many people I know have been obsessed with The Hunger Games for a while now, and being me, I didn’t want to jump on the bandwagon… after reading it, I definitely won’t be.

So The Hunger Games is about a 16 year old girl named Katniss (or Catnip to her lovely friend, Gale) who decides she’s going to take her sister’s place in The Hunger Games. Every year, the Capitol forces each district to submit a boy and girl to fight to the death in a strange arena full of deadly traps. Only one can survive.

Katniss’s sister, Prim, is one of the chosen ones from District 12. Katniss, loving Prim too much, decided to take her place. Alongside Katniss, a boy named Peeta was chosen to go to the arena.

For me, the only thing that saved this book was the idea. I loved the idea of children going off to fight to the death. I know that sounds dreadful, but the premise for the book was great. The kids are going to die one way or another, so giving them a chance to bring honour and riches to their families is something at the very least. I hated the Capitol, I thought it was terrible. But it made me think, does such a place really exist?

My favourite character was the girl from District 11 – Rue. She seemed kind enough, small, her songs were wonderful, and it wasn’t fair that she was there… or that anyone was there, for that matter.

Again, the idea was neat.

So now that I’ve given it some good points, I think it’ll be alright to completely tear apart the rest of it.

WHAT IN THE SERIOUS HELL?!

I want to give this 2.5 stars, not 3, but the fact there’s no half star symbol makes it so I can’t or I will go nuts. What in the serious hell did I just read? The writing? What the hell was that? I could write better than that, at a much younger age. Everyone is entitled to their own writing style, I know I have one, but… here’s some tips.

Tip 1. GET AN EDITOR! If I can consistently point out spelling and grammatical errors, you’re doing something seriously wrong! I’m not perfect, nobody is, but I have the tendency to be a grammar Nazi, and reading it hurts my eyes. I had to read some sentences 5 times over because it made absolutely no sense at all.

Tip 2. Okay, so I don’t have a second tip, I just wanted to rant about that.

I watched the movie before I read the book, which didn’t matter much because neither were all that great. I thought to myself, “the book must be better than this.” Well… at least the movie had pictures… and no painful sentences. And that’s coming from someone that ALWAYS reads before watching.

It was a neat idea, don’t get me wrong, but unless you don’t care about terrible writing (or don’t know the difference between good and bad writing), or they re-release an edited version, please don’t bother. It was painful, but I wanted to see what all the hype was about. Do they get better as they go along?

Okay, if you can stand the terrible writing, read it, it was interesting… and at least then you can get it out of the way.

Enjoy, and happy reading!

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Review: The Forestwife

The Forestwife by Theresa Tomlinson

Series: Forestwife Saga

Pages: 170

Genre: Fantasy, Childrens, Fairy Tales, Adventure

My Rating: 5/5

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

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“Deep in Sherwood Forest, there lives a community of outlaws. These heroic people have escaped the cruelty of medieval England’s lords and their unjust laws. The brave young Robert (alias Robin Hood) is one of these rebels; the Forestwife, a woman with magic healing powers, is another. Soon a fifteen-year-old orphan named Mary will flee into the forest to avoid the fearsome marriage her uncle has arranged for her. She will not be heard from again, but the legend of Maid Marian, the Green Lady of the woods, will have begun.”

My loverly friend and I have started sharing books with each other, which works especially well considering we’re both big into fantasy. Even Friendly Giant has told me about books I need to read, so be prepared!

The Forestwife was a lovely book, full of magic and intrigue. I have a wild imagination, so this really piqued my interest. As you can tell from what the back of the book says, it’s about a girl named Mary that runs off into the woods to escape a terrible marriage she wants no part in. Luckily, Agnes, a good friend, helps her in her journey.

Personally, while reading this book, I imagined everything, from the trees to the deer. When it talked about the Forestwife’s house, I imagined a very large oak tree with a door in the trunk filled with shelves upon shelves of herbs and healing potions… corners with burlap sacks full of grain… I’ve always been into learning about natural approaches and this basically is how I always wanted to be.

If you have a vivid imagination, it’s a wonderful read.

I didn’t even really grasp the romance. It wasn’t pronounced or ugly, it was just… there. Hell, I didn’t even mind the birth stuff… not that much anyway.

And the ending? Holy bajebus…

It’s always fun to share books from your past, and I’m really glad she shared this with me (onto the next one, right?!). I gave it a 5/5 because it dragged me into the world, and I actually liked the main character for once. Not only that, but this is the type of book I would’ve read when I was younger, and it was beautifully written, thus, appreciated even at 21.

Enjoy, and happy reading!

Review: Splintered

Splintered by A.G. Howard

Series: Splintered

Pages: 371

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Retelling, Romance, Adventure

My Rating: 5/5

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

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“This stunning debut captures the grotesque madness of a mystical under-land, as well as a girl’s pangs of first love and independence. Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers—precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now.
When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.”

As most of you know, I’m incredibly stingy when it comes to giving out 5 stars. Very few books I’ve ever reviewed have received a full 5/5 grade.

Splintered is about this girl named Alyssa who has to go to Wonderland so she can have the answers she’s been craving and also to get her mother out of the asylum.

Personally, I’m a huge Alice in Wonderland fan. I liked Disney’s movie, I like the books, the retellings, even the games. If you give me something that’s based around Alice in Wonderland, I will generally fall in love, and Splintered was no exception. I fell for this book almost immediately after reading the first paragraph. It takes you into a new world; one you’re vaguely familiar with, but becomes something wondrous in its own right.

I don’t read things to look smart or show off, I read things that appeal to me, which sometimes means I’m reading children’s books, like The Twits or a Goosebumps book.

Splintered really dragged me into the world of Alyssa and her family. She was a young, courageous, innocent girl that did nothing more than follow her heart. And the writing style was fantastic. It wasn’t written in a “sing-song” way, or a dumbed-down way either, it was just perfect. The imagery within made you feel like you were apart of the story. You could see the stars, feel the ocean, taste the oysters, and smell the decay. All throughout this novel, you were part of the story, you were Alyssa, or Morpheus, or Jeb. You were one of the characters. You felt what they felt, you were there the entire time. A lot of books don’t have the power to drag you in like this one did.

I really liked Alyssa, she reminded me a lot of myself. Innocent and shy with a lot of pent up emotion, just to come out later on as a woman who knows what she wants.

I liked how the characters weren’t solely based off of the Disney movie, nor were they based purely off the book. Howard gave a part of herself when she unleashed her imagination, which was a dark, sometimes grotesque picture. I loved it.

What can I really say about this book? I loved it and if you like Alice in Wonderland, chances are you’ll like it too. I can’t even really complain about the love triangle (that happens in EVERY YA book) because it was interesting. Personally, Morpheus reminded me a lot of M, which sounds weird, but just the way he acted… very protective.

So why did Splintered receive 5/5?

Truth be told, I’m extremely biased. I love Alice in Wonderland and I love reading about other peoples’ interpretations. It’s more of a girly read, but hey! I’m a girl, so it’s okay! And I’d definitely recommend it if you like even the thought of Wonderland and the creatures within. Just keep your mind open, for your own sake.

Enjoy, and happy reading!