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Publisher's Summary

Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don't live to see the morning?

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by 12 outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before - and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

©2008 Suzanne Collins (P)2008 Scholastic Inc.

Critic Reviews

"[The Hunger Games] is a violent, jarring, speed-rap of a novel that generates nearly constant suspense... I couldn't stop reading." (Stephen King, Entertainment Tonight)
"I was so obsessed with this book that I had to take it with me out to dinner and hide it under the edge of the table so I wouldn't have to stop reading... The Hunger Games is amazing." (Stephanie Meyer)
"Brilliantly plotted and perfectly paced." John Green, (New York Times Book Review)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    31,649
  • 4 Stars
    11,275
  • 3 Stars
    2,882
  • 2 Stars
    674
  • 1 Stars
    481

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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    23,114
  • 4 Stars
    9,223
  • 3 Stars
    3,101
  • 2 Stars
    715
  • 1 Stars
    483

Story

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
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    26,531
  • 4 Stars
    7,704
  • 3 Stars
    2,082
  • 2 Stars
    453
  • 1 Stars
    307
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Becky
  • O Brien, Oregon, United States
  • 03-28-12

Excellent story concept - reader is easy to follow

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Quick listen, keeps you interested

What did you like best about this story?

Enjoyed listening to Katniss apply skills acquired through every day survival, watching as her cunning and urge to survive kicked in at various levels of the game.

Which character – as performed by Carolyn McCormick – was your favorite?

Katniss followed closely by Peeta

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Listen during a drive.

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  • Kenneth
  • Cary, NC, United States
  • 03-27-12

I am already listening to #2

I did not want this one to end. I loved the way it just carried the listener along. There were very few slow spots and those were just long enough to allow you to catch your breath. Yes, it was written for teens so you have to accept a little bit of shallowness in the plot but as an adult, I find that refreshing sometimes.

The love scenes are awkward but they are meant to be. The fight scenes are less graphic than they may be if written for an adult audience which I prefer. Katniss is a little too smart and naive at the same time but just what a teenager might imagine a heroine to be. In this scenario however, it all boils down to great action that keeps you glued to your headphones. I literally finished this in 2 days.

I do think it was written with a screenplay in mind but I thoroughly enjoyed it anyway.

The narrator does a fine job with subtle but distinct voice changes for every character.

I am suggesting that my husband listen to this one next.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A great and emersive story!

Would you consider the audio edition of The Hunger Games to be better than the print version?

No

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Hunger Games?

When the Katniss and Peeta are finally the last two tributes, the Gamemakers reverse the rule change in an attempt to force them into a dramatic finale, where one must kill the other to win. Katniss, knowing that the Gamemakers would rather have two victors than none, retrieves highly poisonous berries known as

Which character – as performed by Carolyn McCormick – was your favorite?

Katniss and Rue

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, but I could have if I had the time. Once I started reading I didn't want to stop.

Any additional comments?

This is a very good read.

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  • James
  • Redmond, OR, United States
  • 03-27-12

Exceeded Expectations

What made the experience of listening to The Hunger Games the most enjoyable?

I had been told for over a year to read or listen to this book. I am always hesitant to read/listen to a book when I know a movie is being made about it as I think it takes a bit away from the storytelling if I know too much. The storyline also seemed to be something that didn't excite me enough to ever pick it up...I'm glad to say I was wrong. The writing let me imagine a fantastic adventure that I never saw coming. Thank you!

Who was your favorite character and why?

I think there are probably a few, but who can't love the main character here. Katniss or Catniss maybe...unsure how to spell it.

What about Carolyn McCormick’s performance did you like?

The audio was good. At times I wasn't crazy about the voice changes, but overall it was well done. <br/>

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Plenty of moments to be moved by...plenty.

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  • Story
  • Cyndi
  • HAGERSTOWN, MD, United States
  • 03-27-12

I don't get the hype

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

different narrator would've helped, but still wouldn't get it up to a 4 or 5 for me.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

I just found the overall story uninteresting. I did not connect with any of the characters -- I tried the 2nd book in the series thinking I'll give it another chance for character development and better story....nope. Ditched the 3rd and moving on with my life. Waste of time listen for me.

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  • Julie
  • Chicago, IL, United States
  • 03-27-12

Narrator almost kills it....

I read this series a year or so ago and thought it would be fun to listen to the audiobook. The narrator does a pretty good job of ruining this book with her sing songy whiny voice. Every sentence has the same flow of pitch, from low at the beginning to a high whiny sound. May stop me from finishing. I was sad to see that she narrates the other two as well.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Enthralling read and well worth the time

What made the experience of listening to The Hunger Games the most enjoyable?

The author did a superb job on descriptions; surroundings, weapons and tools, people, and the costumes. It was so easy for me to visualize a place or a scent or a face. I know there has been lots of controversy about the subject matter, but at the end of the day, it's a story. That's why we choose a work of fiction, isn't it; we want a story? I absolutely loved this book and have since listened to the other two books in the series. This one is still my favorite.Carolyn McCormick had the perfect Katniss voice, in my opinion, and yet she was very believable in performing all the other voices (especially Effie and Hammish). Highly recommended.<br/><br/>

Who was your favorite character and why?

Rue (sp?). She was so clever and resourceful and so forgiving. She had a lovely spirit.

What does Carolyn McCormick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Definately the emotion of the characters.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It made me grateful for my life.

Any additional comments?

Please forgive any misspelling of names - the only downside of an audio book.

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  • Jana
  • Pasadena, TX, United States
  • 03-26-12

Can't say enough good things!

Where does The Hunger Games rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

At the top! Loved this book and the voice made it come alive!

Who was your favorite character and why?

Rue - She was so small yet full of power and life and her last scene was very moving!

Which character – as performed by Carolyn McCormick – was your favorite?

Effie Trinket hands down, I loved her performance SO much that when I saw the film later I was let down by the actor's performance :/

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Lots! But Thresh letting Katniss live was very thrilling, sad and sweet.

Any additional comments?

Book performance SO much better than the movie.

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  • Story
  • sara
  • Sonoma, CA, United States
  • 03-26-12

It Caught Me and Never Let Go

My niece was reading this book, and was obsessed. This made me think it was for the pre-teen, so I ignored it. It was not until I started seeing the previews for the movie that I thought I should read it because the movie was one that I wanted to see. I am so glad I did! It caught me and never let go. I am a big fan of post-apocolyptic stories, so when I started listening I could not stop. The story is very well written, and performed. The characters are so well developed, which helped when I did finally see the movie. I have read all three in the series, and I can say that I will forever be haunted and enchanted by this story. "Happy Hunger Games...and may the odds be ever in your favor!"

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  • Tamara
  • Quartz Hill, CA, United States
  • 03-26-12

Wasn't sure I would like it

Would you listen to The Hunger Games again? Why?

YES - with all the hype with the moview, I thought ok, I have to read (listen) to it, but I was amazed by the story and the coming of age story.

What other book might you compare The Hunger Games to and why?

Harry Potter - you fall in love with the characters and they draw you in! I loved it, can't wait to start listening to book 2.

Have you listened to any of Carolyn McCormick’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Never heard her before - she did a great job.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Catness going off to find Piter when she knew that they could both go home together - and the dramatic double suicide attempt, to create a movement to save both of them!

Any additional comments?

Loved it - downloading book 2 ASAP.