Fri 23 Mar 2012
Katniss the Cattail: An Unauthorized Guide to Names and Symbols in Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games – Valerie Estelle Frankel
Posted by Kellie under Other Books
Synopsis: Who was Cinna? What do the hawthorn and primrose symbolize? Or President Snow’s roses and Peeta’s bread? What about Katniss’s last name? Bringing details from myths, herbal guides, military histories, and the classics, English professor and award-winning pop culture author Valerie Estelle Frankel sheds light on the deeper meanings behind Panem’s heroes and villains in this hottest of YA trilogies. In her series, Collins not only weaves a heroic tale of deep complexity but harnesses the power of Shakespeare and Rome to retell an ancient epic of betrayal, violence, and glory on the stage of an apocalyptic future. The perfect treat for fans of all ages. -Goodreads
Review: Katniss the Cattail looks into the meanings and patterns behind the names that Suzanne Collins chose for her characters throughout all three novels in the Hunger Games series. I was really blown away by some of the patterns and hidden meanings that you could see for so many of the characters. Some characters were clearly named based on their purpose, others to correspond with their geographical area in the story and the really interesting ones managed to do both at the same time. I only picked up The Hunger Games series last year but have already read through it multiple times, so it was a fantastic treat to be able to add even more to think about when considering this great series.
To be fair, I’m fairly sure that even Suzanne Collins did not have quite so many reasons for each character name as this book explains. Some characters have at least three possible explanations for where their name came from and so some are likely to just be a happy coincidence but either way each explanation gets you thinking and really helps you to appreciate just how well thought out The Hunger Game novels really are. Valerie Estelle Frankel has definitely uncovered some interesting possibilities about where character ideas came from and who or what each person is supposed to represent.
So, if you’re going to go see The Hunger Games movie tonight (especially if you haven’t read the books) enjoy and consider picking up a copy of Katniss the Cattail to add a whole new dimension to his super fantastic series that we all love way too much.
I’m not going to see the movie until tomorrow night but I pretty much can’t wait. I’m going to see it with a few people who I recently forced to read (or listen to) the book so it will be really cool to experience this new version of it with them for the first time together. Anyways, cheesyness aside… I’m excited and I’m sure you all are too!
On a final note, I’ll be featuring quite a few of Valerie’s titles over the next few months so keep an eye out as the majority of her titles focus on examining or re imagining some of our favorite stories and characters so I have really high hopes!
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