Been reading The Hunger Games today because I recently watched the movie last night and am struck with a particular scene in the novel: Where Peeta, the bread boy, throws a starving Katniss burned bread from his kitchen.
For those of you who haven’t read the book, I suggest you go read it now. Not only is it great reading, but great writing too! From the first page you are drawn into Katniss’s world, you feel her emotion, and the unrest in the dystopian society that she lives in. (I can’t tell you how much I don’t like that word, for some reason it just irks me.) It is a fast read, but not a read for the faint of heart, certainly.
Anyway, I guess the English Major in me is stuck on the Boy with the Bread Scene and the juicy little bits that scene may or may not represent. Oh, it certainly doesn’t have to represent anything, but I love that it can and that Suzanne Collins isn’t dumb. That deliberately or not, she has created a scene that sums up the heart of the novel, or at the very least a great portion of it and that is:
What does Peeta sacrifice when he throws Katniss the bread? Well, he certainly didn’t get hurt for nothing. He was willing to risk injury to himself, in order to be “kind” to help out Katniss, who was someone in need.
His motives? Well, love. He later claims that he’s been in love with Katniss ever since a young age. (Although it certainly takes her awhile to believe it).
And isn’t that at the very heart of the novel? Peeta’s initial sacrifice only goes to emphasize Katniss’s sacrifice; the offer of her own life in exchange for her sister’s at the reaping. It is because of her love for her sister that she sacrifices herself. And other characters experience their own sacrifices as well. It is the love and the sacrifices accompanying them that says a lot about family, about life and death throughout the novel.
Any thoughts? What do you love about the novel? About the characters? About Katniss?