>The Hunger Games trilogy has become a cultural phenomenon over the past couple years, and the final book in the trilogy, Mockingjay, goes on sale tonight at 12:01 AM. Like Harry Potter, there will be midnight release parties for this one. If you’re on the hold list for Mockingjay (or The Hunger Games or Catching Fire, for that matter), below are some other books you’ll find in the library that might appeal to you.
Uglies is the first book in a trilogy by Scott Westerfeld. In this dystopic future, people go through surgery to become “pretties” at 16, a change that enhances similar characteristics and shifts features toward the ideal of beauty. Teens are then free to party and play. Tally is one young Ugly who yearns to become a Pretty, but things get turned upside down when her friend Shay runs away and Tally is told to go spy on her or never be allowed to become a Pretty.
Yelena is convicted of killing a general’s son and sentenced to death by hanging. Granted a reprieve in exchange for becoming a poison taster for the Commander, ruler of Ixia, Yelena is soon caught up in castle politics. She also realizes some people want her dead and Ixia is not a terribly stable country at the moment. Poison Study, with a strong leading female character, complicated political machinations and a riveting romance will suck in readers as surely as The Hunger Games did.
For a more grown-up version of The Hunger Games, Genesis may appeal. In this near-future dystopia, Anax is a young historian living in an island society that is a refuge from the rest of the devastated planet. The island is founded on security and order above freedom, modeled after Plato’s Republic. Anax wants to enter the Academy, and completes her entrance exam paper on Adam Forde, a soldier who rescued a young girl from a raft and was sentenced to work with an advanced robot named Art as his punishment. This short novel is a philosophical work centered on the interaction of humanity, technology and the environment, but it manages to read like a thriller the whole way through.
A few other ideas for books like those in The Hunger Games trilogy include:
Feed by M.T. Anderson
Oryx and Crake and The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
Unwind by Neal Shusterman
Naughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman
Jennifer Government by Max Barry
Tomorrow, When the War Began by John Marsden
Neuromancer by William Gibson
You can also check out the display cart that’s in front of the teen zone dedicated to Mockingjay readalikes.
>If you’re waiting for Eat, Pray, Love (or enjoyed it), here are some other titles to check out.
If you enjoyed the experience of following along with Elizabeth Gilbert on her journey of self-discovery, you may want to pick up It Sucked and Then I Cried: How I Had a Baby, A Breakdown, and a Much Needed Margarita by Heather Armstrong (author of the blog dooce.com). Having a baby is a life-changing event, a journey chronicled by Armstrong in It Sucked and Then I Cried. Armstrong doesn’t sugar-coat the experience and approaches it with humor as she discusses everything from her relationship with her body during pregnancy to her battle with chronic depression and the joys (and tedium) of caring for a newborn.
If you’re interested in the sense of place and wonderful characters of Eat, Pray, Love, then you might enjoy Extra Virgin: A Young Woman Discovers the Italian Riviera, Where Every Month is Enchanted. This memoir follows a young woman and her sister as they travel to Italy for a summer job and then decide to stay after falling in love with the Italian countryside. They have an immense appreciation for Italian food and a willingness to work hard to succeed in the new home they purchase. Colorful natives and wonderful descriptions of what it’s like to live in a small town in Italy permeate this beautiful narrative.
If you want to read Eat, Pray, Love because you love food, then you may enjoy Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. In this book, Kingsolver chronicles the first year of an experiment her family undertook to eat only food grown locally. This means lots of trips to the farmers’ market and lots of growing their own food. Kingsolver discusses everything from the health (and taste) benefits of eating only foods that are not processed and filled with additives, as well as the environmental and community benefits of supporting local agriculture. This memoir is an interesting and informative look at a movement in which many Americans are getting involved.
>Feeling like picking up a movie for Friday or Saturday night? Stop by the library and check out our selection!
Sometimes being single is hard and frustrating. Women sometimes threaten to give up on men and simply start dating other women. Well, Jessica Stein actually follows through with the threat in Kissing Jessica Stein. Jessica sees a classified ad in the “women seeking women” section of the newspaper that contains a quote from her favorite author, and on a whim, she answers it. Hilarity ensues as two women who have previously only dated men try to navigate a relationship with each other.
In the early to mid-2000s there were a bunch of movies that came out that were comedies, but the humor was very awkward (think Shopgirl, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, or The Royal Tenenbaums). Broken Flowers falls into that category. Don Johnston receives a letter one day informing him he may have a 19 year old son who is looking for him. He has also just been dumped by his latest girlfriend. This letter induces Don to embark on a journey to find the four old girlfriends who may be able to enlighten him concerning this possible offspring. The music from this film is absolutely amazing, and Bill Murray is absolutely hilarious.
Bolt is an extremely funny and poignant family film. Bolt is a dog in an action/sci-fi television show, but he doesn’t realize the things happening in the show aren’t real and that he doesn’t have superpowers. When he believes his owner, Penny, is in danger, he sets off across the country to find and save her. Along the way, he meets an alley cat who just wants to be loved and a hamster who worships him. The two join him on his quest to save Penny.