Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Hunger Games

I don't usually jump on the bandwagon.  I like to be sure it's worth my time.  Sometimes it works.  I bought a three book Harry Potter set to keep for when Jesse was ready to read them (He was two at the time).  Within a month of them being on the shelf I had read Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and was hooked.  That was okay since I had two more and Goblet of Fire was due out in a few months.

Sometimes it's harder.  I started watching Lost in season three. (What is it about threes?)  It's Ezra Moses' fault.  I was staying with the Moses family  while visiting Montreal when I was ECRUSY director and Ezra was the president.  Ezra refused to work while Lost was on, and I spent the whole episode looking the show up on ABC's website so I could figure out what was happening.  There were two episodes back to back and I was hooked.  Not all was lost.  The SciFi channel ran seasons 1-3 over the hiatus, and by season 4 I was up to date.

On to the Hunger Games.  I was textbook shopping at Batner Books in August, and I decided to ask the clerk at the store to recommend books for my kids.  I wanted something "worthwhile."  At first everything he recommended we already owned, but finally he suggested The Hunger Games.  According to him, they were worth the read (and the hype).  I came home and read it myself first (on the clerk's suggestion).  It was worth every bit of hype.  I was drawn in and cared about the characters as I was with Harry Potter (although the comparison ends there).  Jesse read it in a matter of days, and spent weeks begging for the next.  I quickly ordered Catching Fire and Mocking Jay. 

When they arrived I selfishly made Jesse wait as I inhaled the text.  We were sad to see the series end.  Recently Gavriel and Keren discovered the series.  It's not a series I'd recommend for 10-12 year olds, but the books are in the house.  Gavi was into book two and Keren almost finished with The Hunger Games when I discovered what they were reading.  It's sparked a lot of discussions at the table, in the car, when they should be in bed, and almost anywhere else.  Never has a book (or series) held Gavi's attention and devotion like the Hunger Games series has.  He generally reads a bit, goes on to something else, comes back for more- maybe.  Gavi read The Hunger Games in less than a week, Catching Fire in three days, and Mocking Jay in the same time.  Keren was slightly faster, although she did have to wait for Gavi to finish.

Today the four of us went to the movie. (Sean had a funeral.)  I agonized over whether to take Gavi and Keren, but on the strength of our discussions (and reviews stating the violence was intense, but not graphic) I decided to take them.  We watched an early matinee.  It was an excellent film adaptation.  Once out of the theater discussion began... "They changed this..."  "They left that out, but I think it was important."  "That's not how I pictured Cinna."  "Really, that was exactly how I pictured Cinna."  Conversation continued until we got home, then Jesse had a friend over, and Gavi and Keren had karate, but I imagine the discussion will continue over the next few weeks.  As for me, I reread the series last month in anticipation of the movie.  Now that I've seen it, I plan on reading it again.  That'll be three times in a year.  I guess this bandwagon was worth the ride.

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