Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Hunger Games

I love distopia novels; if I had to list off some of my favorite books of all time, books like 1984, The Handmaid's Tale, Brave New World and The Giver would all rank pretty high. In each of those books, in their own way, they show that often society's biggest flaw is it's desire to be perfect and the sacrifice's they make to achieve this.

A few months back, I heard about a new distopia book called The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. In a nutshell, the book takes place in a future version of the United States; in this future there are 12 districts, and every year the 12 districts send two teens (a boy and a girl) to fight in the Hunger Games--a televised battle where 24 kids fight to the death and only one survives.

Katniss, a girl from one of the weaker districts (District 12), agrees to fight in the games in place of her younger sister; she knows she doesn't stand a chance in the games because, unlike some of the other districts, District 12 doesn't train kids for the games from an early age. Katniss learns quickly the power of media manipulation (one of many great themes in the book), and it's here that the book really starts to take off.

I've heard a few people say this book is just a cheap rip-off of Battle Royale; I haven't read Royale yet (but it's currently on my reading list), but I am going to take a wild guess and say they're wrong. I can see the similar themes, but The Hunger Games is more about finding identity than attacking a social structure--there's really hardly any back-story at all about how the society in The Hunger Games got to be the way it is. 

At the heart of the book is a story about friendship, romance, sacrifice, survival, and discovering your identity--each key ingredients in what makes compelling read. It's also not very gruesome--something I hear Battle Royale is.

The Hunger Games is the first book in a proposed trilogy (Catching Fire comes out in September); I imagine it's this book that will go a little deeper into what's wrong with the society and play more on the theme of man's voyeuristic tendencies. I can't wait to read it, because by the time I finished The Hunger Games I was completely engrossed with the characters and eager to see how they develop.

I won't give away the end, except to say the games do end and the government is not happy at all with the outcome, because they have been embarrassed.

Check it out if your looking for a summer read you won't be able to put down.

And thanks to Diana for the gift...

Friday, April 24, 2009


Those who know me, know I'm a sucker for finding ways to look busy while not actually doing anything; it is true that the lazy man works twice as hard, and that's why I do it--I like working hard.

So when Diana emailed a link to Spreadtweet, I just had to share! Spreadtweet is one of the most brilliant lazy man solutions I've come across in a long time! It let's you use Microsoft Excel to Twitter...that way you look like you're actually doing work.

Friday, April 17, 2009


There's a new interview of me up at Litterbox Magazine. FYI, Litterbox is a new Web magazine that just started earlier this month; they have some nice essays, stories, and seem to be nice people--check them out...

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Me, As a Game Character?

Someone quite randomly said that I looke like Gordon Freeman from the video game Half-Life. What do you think? Is it true?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Hope you and yours have a happy Easter. If your bored you can read my thoughts on the Easter Bunny @ Disturbed Christian.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

6,768 Miles Apart

My wife, who already has way too many things on her plate, has decided to add yet another serving of work; for the next year she (along with another blogger) will be taking pictures (1 a day) of something each morning.

You can read about there adventures on the following post. They will post a new set of pictures each week.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Fools!

I've been a fan of Google's April 1 jokes for quite sometime, but I must admit this years prank was lacking. Chrome in 3D is funny, but I have to admit the pranks from The Guardian and The Pirate Bay were far better.

In case you haven't heard, Pirate Bay was acquired by Warner Bros. The best April Fools pranks are the ones that seem so true they making you actually think it's a possibility. Such was the case with this bogus prank.

The best prank, however, was The Guardian, who announced that they will be entirely published via Twitter post! Sadly, I think they just might be on to a trend, and I could actually see a newspaper doing this in a few years.

Today's other classic pranks: