Thursday, December 24, 2009

Where Was I?

4:30 PM Posted by Patrick , , , 3 comments
I think that reading is the thing I miss most about pre-college life. I really notice it now that I'm back to my several book a week regimen. And I really don't think that I gained more from that English class than I do from my normal 14 weeks of reading and writing.

At least a couple of my classes this semester will be using real books for our materials.

While one could certainly argue that some of my reading is much more substantial, it is not necessarily the substantial reading that gives the greatest benefit. I think that I gain a lot more as a writer from good books which capture my interests and emotions than great literature which bores me. *coughbrontecough*

The Hunger Games was well written and absolutely gripping. One of those books that made me laugh and cry and caused my dry tongue to cleave to the roof of my mouth in some of the more intense portions. Her varied tempo with the sentence structure is excellent and she manages to make it feel like natural human thought, even when the sentences were short and came in rapid bursts. I, who may never create natural thought or dialog in text, was awed. The doubt-- believable, palpable, and invasive--was a driving force which made the act of relinquishing the book in favour of food impossible.

One of the harsh and striking points of this book is the hungry eyes of the Capitol looking on as children kill children. When Rue dies (how the tears doth flow) and Katniss--who is looking on the face of the boy who killed Rue; the boy now peaceful in death--realizes it is the Capitol who is the enemy, you share the hatred; the burning anger at the atrocities that are commonplace. There is an enemy in the background that cannot even be fought. The tributes are left to kill each other as the real enemy remains totally unassailable and aloof; watching and enjoying their pain. But the fact that there is a foe that can be defeated is what keeps it from being utterly all the rest of dystopia.

I normally despise dystopia, but I loved this book to the last page. I cannot wait to read the sequel...which is waiting for me just over there.

However, as I have not yet started it, I should feast on prime rib while I can; that way I can make it through the book without any hunger pangs.


  1. I thought it was slightly predictable, but the writing was so good I enjoyed it immensely anyway.

    I admit, though, that I groaned every single time I read the word 'muttation'.

    (This is Maggie, by the way.)

  2. What was that sacrilegious comment about Bronte???

  3. Hmm, Thankfully "muttation" was only used a few times. But, yes, rather terrible.

    The sacrilege was provoked by several literary attempts on my happiness. ;-)

    To be a little more specific, Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights.

    I might try them again someday, but not right now.