Well, there are 592 days until the movie adaptation of Catching Fire is scheduled for release on November 22, 2013. If you already knew that, you have a problem. If you not only already knew that, but have created a customized Katniss Everdeen countdown calendar, then you may be beyond help.
So what are you supposed to do in the meantime? Well, you could read the books for the 15th time. Or maybe look up some fan fiction on the web, which will be at best terrible and at worst will make you wish Al Gore had never invented the internet. We suggest taking a look at our first Hunger Games withdrawal post. Once you are through with those, here is some more suggested reading to take the edge off:
Lord of the Flies: William Golding’s 1954 classic is renowned for its stance on the essential nature of humans, and the conflict between individual welfare and the common good. But let’s be honest, it’s just a bunch of dudes going bonkers on an island. We’re sure some English teacher has, or will, make you read this book, but read it on your own without having to worry about what Golding is saying about the human condition. Sometimes a pig’s head on a stick is just a pig’s head on a stick. (Just kidding, it symbolizes the end of rational thinking and the dominance of the primitive side of human nature.)
Battle Royale: Koushun Takami’s 1999 novel is basically Hunger Games if you took out all of the emotional, touching parts and replaced them with someone getting their head chopped off. In a bloody, gorey nutshell, the book is about a yearly program in a fictionalized Japan, where students from one high-school class are made to fight to the death on an island to dissuade the general public from uprising and keep them distracted. Yeah, we know what you’re thinking after reading that sentence: It is suspiciously similar to the Hunger Games. That’s the only downside to reading Battle Royale, there are definitely a few parts that may make you question Suzanne Collins’ originality. But guess what? The Hunger Games is really, really good, so who cares (other than maybe Koushun Takami)?
The Lottery: Shirley Jackson’s classic short story is not exactly pleasure reading. Residents of an unspecified small town gather for the annual lottery. We won’t spoil the story by telling you what the “winner” gets, but it’s not a lifetime supply of Frosted Flakes. After reading the Lottery, you might decide the tributes in the Hunger Games aren’t quite as unlucky as you thought.
The Running Man: Richard Bachman wrote this 1982 novel. “Wait a second, I’ve never heard of Richard Bachman!” Yes you have, because he’s Stephen King. That’s right, King wrote 7 books under the name Richard Bachman. The Running Man take place in 2025 and follows Ben Richards as he participates in a violent game show that involves contestants being hunted all over the world. You may have seen the movie with Arnold Shwarzenegger, but the book is totally different and way better (except it doesn’t include Jesse Ventura and Family Feud Host Richard Dawson. But other than that, better.)
Have you read any of these?