Saw the Movie Before Reading the Books:
I just finished reading Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins…like 30 minutes ago, so its fresh in my mind. I found something very interesting about my journey into reading this book which in turn, taught me something about myself. I saw the Hunger Games sometime last year. I don’t even remember if I saw it in theaters or rented it after at home.
I hadn’t been swept up by my new love for YA literature cause as I’ve said in past blogs, I thought being an adult now, I wasn’t allowed and needed to read only grownup stuff, while secretly intrigued by the entire Young Adult genre still. Don’t get me wrong, I love my adult stuff too (Jane Austen has a place in my heart, always. Some of the classics, are just that, forever classics and a few other stuff here and there) but YA books feel like Home to me. I had never read the books so I didn’t understand the hype that was surrounding this movie, at the time. I saw it, I enjoyed it for what it was and that was it.
Looking back–especially after reading the book–there was so much I just couldn’t get invested in. I’m a movie chick too, so I need and expect even in the cheesiest of films, to be brought into a state of investment. I wanted to get invested in Katniss as a person, I wanted to get invested in a love story interwoven somewhere but none of it happened. The focus of the story seemed more about mild action-adventure that tried to throw in heart but I couldn’t find it. The only place I found it was between Katniss and Rue. So I enjoyed the movie more for the interesting plot line of the Games. With the second movie coming about, I was only intrigued because of an actor I noticed whose in it now that I, well, let’s just say, enjoy watching ::grin:: and to see if they can get me invested into some sort of love story. (All along hoping for Gale and Katniss, especially after seeing a kiss somewhere in the preview of Catching Fire).
All this, was my impression last year, seeing the movie, not having read the books yet…
Reading Book #1 Now a Year Later:
Let me tell ya, seeing the movie before reading the book was a great disservice to me. Being one of the popular YA books right now, (I have set myself to read and catch up on as many well known YA books) I decided I needed to read this book. While reading it–credit to the movie–I felt tons of it was portrayed exactly as it was in the book. There were things here and there of course, but lots of it was identical. As I wrote two blogs ago, what I missed in the movie was Katniss’ inner dialogue that you couldn’t get within the movie but was what helped explain SO much about her, her character and decisions to me.
I was honestly coasting through the book almost bored wanting to get through it as quickly as I can, not cause it wasn’t good but due to the fact that I wasn’t getting that new feeling of unexpected emotion from discovery. I knew what was going on and what was going to happen already because of watching the movie.
It was still a good read because I got through it fairly quickly. No matter how much I want to get through reading a book, if it’s not keeping my attention, rarely do I get through it. It remains with a bookmarked page somewhere between the beginning and the middle and stays there. So, clearly, the book is good.
The Turning Point:
Interesting enough, as I was making my way to the end of the book, something happened. The last forty or thirty pages were NOTHING like the movie. Especially the moment they “win”, from there on it’s so different. It had my undivided attention. I enjoyed the extra tidbits that happened between there and them returning back to District 12 together. Everything that was then said and revealed just in the last few pages (I dont want to spoil it in case you haven’t read it and want to now) perked me up!
I read that last page, closed it, slapped it against my lap and exclaimed,
“Dang it! Now I want to read the second one…literally, NOW!”
I had no intentions or interest in reading the rest of the series before. I was gonna wait till later in the near future. I literally checked online to see if perhaps Target was gonna be open with enough time to run over and buy a copy of it...hashtag# Fail!
It wasn’t opened and then mother nature intervened and told me loud and clear, that I wasn’t going anywhere. Hard torrential rain came out of NO WHERE as I was literally about to step out the door. A girl can take a hint. Back upstairs I went, stomping like an angry child, head hanging low.
The book was almost ruined for me due to watching the movie first, but luckily those last few pages drew me in and all of a sudden the veil was removed and I was able to appreciate the book as if I had read it prior to any movie. I realized and appreciated that it was a well-written concept. Now I’m excited for the other books of the series and the movies as well.
My Impression: (may contain spoilers…you have been warned)
Love Triangle Dynamic
So, I found this very interesting about the book. The dynamic of the love-triangle, I guess you could say. Katniss and Peeta, Katniss and Gale…oh me oh my, what’s a girl to do? Before I read it, I thought,
“Heller? Gale, duh! I mean, just look at him” ::chuckle::
I feel so conflicted now. Poor Peeta, he has really liked Katniss all this time, and there’s nothing like extreme life or death scenarios to push those once feelings of “like” into full on Love!
Man, in the book you realize how much Katniss faked the “love” and relational development that at the end, when Peeta finally catches on, you ache for him. The thing is, Katniss did develop a fondness for Peetah but at the same time, without really admitting it to herself, realized her feelings for Gale at the same time. Ohmylanta! Talk about a mess.
What I don’t know walking away from book one is, if her feelings, that she clearly does have for Peeta, are more brought on by the comfort and beacon Peeta has become due to their circumstance in the arena? He represents a safe feeling, a feeling of not being alone during life and death. He was a comfort in the midst of hell which can be confused and look an awful lot like,
“Oh, it must be cause I like him like him…in that way”
…Nope! Didn’t we learn from Sandra Bullock in “Speed” as she told Keanu Reeves that:
Sandra Bullock (Annie): “…’cause you know, relationships that start under intense circumstances, they never last”.
This theory is then proven in “Speed 2” when she is no longer with Keanu Reeves character, Jack. Makes sense huh?
Anyway, so I’m curious to see Gale tossed in like a monkey wrench into the relationship, testing out true feelings, seeing then which will surface.
Oh yea, tomorrow I will be making my way to a book-selling store near you…well, actually near me. I’m reading, starting tonight a book my niece insisted on me reading because it’s one; her favorite and two; she sadly informed me it didn’t review well and she needs someone to FanGirl with!
So once I’m done with Heather Brewers’ Soulbound, 1st book of the Legacy of Tril series, I may be wrapping my fingers around Catching Fire‘s pages. I’ll keep ya’ll informed!
Until next time folks!
Happy Reading, Living, Loving!