For Katniss Everdeen, her world has always been about survival; finding enough food to trade for other things to keep her family from going hungry, hunting with her best friend Gale, keeping her family together after her father passes away. She has always been the protector of her family.
So when her little sisters name is called in the drawing for the annual Hunger Games, it's no surprise that Katniss volunteers to go in her place. She puts her life on the line to keep her sister safe and to possibly provide more for her District.
The Hunger Games is a riveting story that shows just what people are willing to do to survive. Before I had gotten to the point where the actual competition began, I stopped, afraid that it would remind me of Lord of the Flies (a book that I personally didn't enjoy reading in high school). But, I was surprised and pleased to discover that it was vastly different and so much more engaging.
I loved the characters that Katniss found herself surrounded by leading up to the games, her view of how unjust it all seemed, and just how clueless she was to the effect she had on her teammate Peeta and her best friend Gale.
At times this story was difficult to get through and others I couldn't put the book down. It was beautifully crafted and engaging, terrifying and yet encouraging. Suzanne Collins created something beyond words with this first book and I know the rest of the series is just as masterful.