August 2011

Suzanne Collins, "Catching Fire"

I took a long break between reading the first and second books of the "Hunger Games" trilogy. About eight months, which is a long time for me under the circumstances. Usually when I enjoy the first book of an existing trilogy, I plow straight into the second and then the third. But in this case, although I enjoyed "The Hunger Games," I just felt a little burnt out by the end of it.
This was partly because the first book is so emotionally intense, in such a relatively short span of book. And partly because I sensed that we might be heading into boring territory. Someone had already mentioned to me that the second book in some ways just re-hashed the first, which didn't sound appealing.

I Am Number Four: A Lukewarm Sci-Fi Flick

If you are familiar with the teen novel I Am Number Four by “Pittacus Lore,” you may already know about its inception—about how a bunch of young writers are being commissioned (so cheaply it’s disgusting and should be considered a human rights violation) to write stories that are being designed like jeans to appeal to youth and to result in movie deals, merchandise sales, and so forth. It’s a business directly being marketed to teens (especially teen girls) in light of the recent Twilight commercial success rather than art or an actual good story, so you might guess how the film was.

Fans Re-Write the Ending to The Hunger Games

Most of the people I’ve talked to were not satisfied with the ending to Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games series—namely, the last two chapters of Mockingjay. I don’t want to give away the ending to those who haven’t read the books, but let’s just say that most people wanted more closure, and maybe more hope, too. Teens call for more romance as well, but they’ll always be doing that, I’m sure. I know I probably did at that age.

I was okay with the ending, but for those who weren’t, many have taken a stab and re-writing the ending. I have read dozens of alternate endings (or embellished endings upon the real one) in fanfiction across the web. In fact, many entered a competition being held at Miss Literati, which is offering a place in their magazine—as well as a set of the books—for whoever wins the challenge. People wrote how they would decide the series might end—in only one chapter—and sent it in over the weekend. Soon we’ll get to hear who wins—and read his or her story in the magazine.

If you’ve written some Hunger Games fanfiction, feel free to recommend it here.