As most of you know [if you know me at all], I love The Hunger Games. For those of you who don’t know, The Hunger Games is a book series by Suzanne Collins. She’s a brilliant writer, and all three of the books in the series are wonderful, although I believe the first to be unparalleled.
The main character in the books is named Katniss. She is a sixteen-year old girl who lives in Panem, the futuristic and dystopian, post-nuclear war [we assume] America. Although there is no mention of other cities or countries, Panem does seem like a bit of an independent, not needing to rely on other places for sustaining resources.
It’s really a good system they have worked out–each District [one through twelve] provides a different resource, and the Capitol keeps the whole place running. Yes, an excellent system…
Except for the Games themselves.
Honestly, if there were no Games, the book and the whole city/country of Panem would be boring and not worth reading. It’s the Games that lend readers to the writer.
The Games were set up because the districts rebelled. Here’s the interesting part; there used to be thirteen districts, but during the rebellion, the thirteenth, which dealt with ‘graphite mining’ [in quotes for those of you who know what happens in Mockingjay…no spoilers yet]. So, because the districts decided [and rightly so] that the Capitol was being cruel and rebelled, the Capitol wiped out D13 and set up the Games to keep everyone in order.
The Games are simple, yet totally malicious: Each district must have one girl and boy for ‘tribute’ who will travel to the capitol, become the face of their home district, and literally fight to the death in an arena–much like gladiators in Rome. Difference is, the technology in Panem is a bit more advanced, and the Gamemakers, who set up the whole arena [which is bigger than my school campus], provide them with ample opportunities–whether those be for weapons, food, or getting blown to smithereens by fireball-shooting trees.
You know, the usual stuff.
The kids are chosen by pulling a piece of paper with a name on it from a bingo type of ball. Those entered in the ball of names have to be between twelve and eighteen, eighteen being ideal for competition, and twelve being just plain sad, considering how small most kids are at twelve. Names can be put in the ball as many times as the kid draws tesserae, which is just like a monthly provision of basic bread and gruel ingredients. If you draw tesserae, you get entered in so many times, and every year you have that many more slips. So basically, unless you’re rich, you’re guaranteed a high chance of being picked with all the names you’ll have entered.
Here’s a list of the districts and their tributes from the first book [this isn’t giving much away if you haven’t read the book yet, no worries]:
D12: Katniss is in D12, along with Peeta Mellark. D12 deals with mining, as in coal. Nasty business, and a poor district on top of that.
D11: The agriculture district. Tributes are Thresh [m] and Rue [f].
D10: Livestock district. Boy has a bad leg, girl is also unnamed, and little to nothing is known about her.
D9: Grain district. Both tributes are unnamed and little is known of them.
D8: Textile [uniform creation] district. Both tributes are unnamed, though it’s common knowledge that the girl is a complete idiot. Just read the book, you’ll get mad at her for her stupidity, too.
D7: Lumber district. Both tributes are unnamed.
D6: Transportation district. Both tributes are unnamed.
D5: Power district–as in power generating. Male tribute is unnamed. Female is Foxface, a clever and defensive player in the Games.
D4: Fishing district, home of a character that everyone loves [who doesn’t appear until Catching Fire and isn’t popular until Mockingjay]. Both tributes are unnamed, but the girl is more involved in Katniss’ story line than the male. This district is part of an alliance known as the Career alliance–basically, those who are well-fed and able to use a weapon. These districts are only the first few, since they’re closer to the Capitol [and therefore the wealth] and they have a training system [illegally] for possible tributes.
D3: General electronics district. Female tribute is unnamed and unknown. Male tribute is a genius and gets into the tribute’s Career circle despite the fact that he isn’t technically a Career.
D2: Stone district–carving, quarries, etc. Cato [m] and Clove [f] are both Career tributes and basically run the Career ‘pack.’
D1: Luxury items district, also the wealthiest district. Marvel [m] and Glimmer [f] are the tributes, and both are Careers.
So there you go, that’s the short list. Next time, I’ll try to do the 75th Games, which means more names and specific references. Until then, GO READ THE BOOK. For real.