The Gang of Five

It certainly has been a crazy year, hasn’t it?  Well, thankfully, a new year is upon us and here at the Gang of Five forum we have a new year of showcases, prompts, and themes to get the new year started in the right way.  We wish you all a happy new year, and we look forward to what you have in store for us this year!

For the month of January we have a new character showcase.  Please warmly welcome Littlefoot's Mother! :)littlefoot The character showcase topic for this month can be found here.

Also keep in mind that the December and January prompts for the fanfic prompt challenge is now open.  We are doing things a bit differently this season and allowing for people to either fulfill a monthly prompt or a suggested prompt during each month.  I look forward to seeing what you all come up with! :)  The fanfic prompt rules and list of monthly prompts can be found here.

New Hunger Games Book (2020) “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.”

Gentle Sharptooth

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Suzanne Collins has written a Prequel to the Hunger Games Trilogy. This one centers on Snow as the protagonist, when he is eighteen and working his way up the Capitol eschelons from poverty. It insinuates he ends up in the 10th Annual Hunger Games, but he may just be a mentor.

Anyone plan on reading it?

I’ve read mixed reviews.



Anagnos

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I've read the free sample of the book and must say that I found it very interesting. Snow wasn't explored much in the original series, so it's interesting to see how his character evolved over time. Look into the early Panem is also quite interesting for we'll see how the country became the one we know at the start of the Hunger Games. This book is all about exploration as we witness Snow's rise to power from poverty. A brilliant move from Collins as I've always found his character very interesting. Although, I'll have to read the book from start to finish before I list my final thoughts.



''Let your heart guide you. It whispers so listen carefully.''  :MomCompassion


Anagnos

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I finished the book today and I have mixed feelings about it. I already wrote a review on the Amazon page, so I will simply copy it here. The book wasn't trash, but I wouldn't call it my favorite Hunger Games novel either. The simplest way I can describe the story without sounding overzealous, is that it is a story about nature, freedom and control.

Spoiler: ShowHide
Like its predecessors, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes has one thing in common with the other books in the series; heavily detailed and pragmatic world-building from Collins that fans of the Hunger Games franchise know and love. The narrative connections to her other works were not only interesting, but brilliantly plotted according to existing lore. Withal, the book ushers in more or less a hundred characters you seldom care about aside from the select few. Unlike in the previous books, there is no emotional link to connect the reader to Lucy Gray like it was with Katniss. You scarcely find yourself feeling bad about the end of the other tributes in the Games.

The book doesn’t solely focus on the Games itself. The broad smorgasbord of developments that tie this story together make it one of a kind and more engrossing. It is not the typical Hunger Games story you would expect to read. First half of the book didn’t really arouse emotion in the reader and the plot meanders enough to make you second-guess the storyline. There are quite a few shaky plot points, too. It only starts to pick up at the second half of the novel in which case it begins to resemble a poorly manufactured building on the verge of ruin.

The only interesting character in the whole book might just be the egocentric Head Gamemaker, Dr. Volumnia Gaul. The mannerisms she shows throughout the book can be linked to the person that would ultimately become like her very own protégé, Coriolanus Snow, the future president that would eventually come to embrace these methods as his own.



''Let your heart guide you. It whispers so listen carefully.''  :MomCompassion