Mark Reads ‘The Hunger Games’: Chapter 17

In the seventeenth chapter of The Hunger Games, Katniss discovers the painful and traumatic consequences of destroying the Careers’ supplies. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read The Hunger Games.

Shit is fucked up.

The impact with the hard-packed earth of the plain knocks the wind out of me. My backpack does little to soften the blow. Fortunately my quiver has caught in the crook of my elbow, sparing both itself and my shoulder, and my bow is locked in my grasp. The ground still shakes with explosions. I can’t hear them. I can’t hear anything at the moment.

Was anyone else confused by the logistics at first? I thought Katniss wasn’t anywhere near the mines. Why did she feel the blast so heavily? Wasn’t she near the edge of the forest?

Just thinking out loud.

After about a minute, the ground stops vibrating. I roll on my side and allow myself a moment of satisfaction at the sight of the smoldering wreckage that was recently the pyramid. The Careers aren’t likely to salvage anything out of that.

u mad careers

Panic begins to set in. I can’t stay here. Flight is essential. But I can neither walk nor hear. I place a hand to my left ear, the one that was turned toward the blast, and it comes away bloody. Have I gone deaf from the explosion? The idea frightens me. I rely as much on my ears as my eyes as a hunter, maybe more at times.

Oh christ, really??? I expected the detonation to go smoothly. How on earth is Katniss going to heal a ruptured ear drum? (Assuming that’s what caused the bleeding.)

But I can’t let my fear show. Absolutely, positively, I am live on every screen in Panem.

OH RIGHT. I keep forgetting this is televised in the whole country. Has she said where the cameras are? I don’t believe there’s been a single mention of a camera at all. Are they hidden throughout the Games? Are they controlled remotely? WHY HASN’T THIS DETAIL BEEN REVEALED?

To say I make it in the nick of time is an understatement. I have literally just dragged myself into the tangle of bushes at the base of the trees when there’s Cato, barreling onto the plain, soon followed by his companions. His rage is so extreme it might be comical—so people really do tear out their hair and beat the ground with their fists—if I didn’t know that it was aimed at me, at what I have done to him.

Oh, I can’t wait until Katniss kills you. That probably makes me a horrible person, BUT WHATEVER.

The boy from District 3 has done his job too well. This idea must occur to Cato, too, because he turns on the boy and appears to be shouting at him. The boy from District 3 only has time to turn and run before Cato catches him in a headlock from behind. I can see the muscles ripple in Cato’s arms as he sharply jerks the boy’s head to the side.

It’s that quick. The death of the boy from District 3.

WHAT THE FUCK. WHAT THE FUCK!!!! Oh hell, I did not see that coming. I wonder if Katniss will feel any guilt because she inadvertently got him killed? Most likely not. She doesn’t seem to be remorseful for killing the other two girls and I’m not even sure she should feel bad.

The waiting game begins after this. The Careers don’t move for hours and neither does Katniss.  The Careers, unsure if a person set off the mines, wait for the anthem to play to see who died. I don’t know what Rue’s supposed to do at this point; is she supposed to light the third fire? The anthem plays and we learn the boys from Districts 3 and 10 have been killed, which forces the Careers to realize that their trap did not kill anyone at all.

Unwilling to risk being seen, Katniss continues to hide until the Careers are long gone. And she thinks the dumbest thing:

Let the Seventy-fourth Hunger Games begin, Cato, I think. Let them begin for real.

Because shit hasn’t been real so far? I’m sorry, this just made me laugh and laugh and laugh.

Ok, enough of my whining. Let’s move on with the story.

Katniss manages to sleep while the Careers are off searching for their culprit. Foxface is actually perusing the remains of the supplies and making off with what she can. Now THAT is going to be an interesting scene, when her and Katniss meet. (If they do.) I mean…Katniss doesn’t hate her, does she? So will she kill her on sight or what? LOOK I DON’T KNOW THESE THINGS AT ALL.

There’s something about that sly grin that makes me sure that befriending Foxface would ultimately get me a knife in the back. With that in mind, this might be an excellent time to shoot her.

Oh, well…thanks for answering my question, Collins. MAYBE I SHOULD JUST READ INSTEAD OF BEING SO SHOUTY.

What follows this is another one of those passages that feels very…listy? Not much happens, but Collins has to get Katniss from Point A in the story to Point B. Along the way, she cleans herself, eats, kills a few fish, and laments that the hearing in left ear is not returning, which is a pretty scary revelation.

(Sorry I don’t have much to say. I’m usually pretty verbose, but we’re at a part of the story where there really isn’t that much variation, so I’m trying to pull out what I can.)

There’s no sign of Rue, though, and Katniss begins to worry about her. I can’t ignore the parallel to Prim. (Nor can I ignore how much Peeta represents Gale, either.) Here, in the Games, Katniss’s love does feel a bit more mothering than what she has for Prim. She even decides it’s time for her to stop waiting and go seek her out herself, somewhere near where the third campfire was supposed to be set. But, to her dismay, the third fire was never set. Rue is gone. Something happened between the second and third fires.

Katniss assumes the worst. Or at least she thinks she does.

I’ve stopped for just a moment when I hear it. I have to cock my head around to the side to be sure, but there it is again. Rue’s four-note tune coming out of a mockingjay’s mouth. The one that means she’s all right.

It’s a sign of hope for Katniss, and one that Collins is quick to completely destroy.

It’s a child’s scream, a young girl’s scream, there’s no one in the arena capable of making that sound except Rue. And now I’m running, knowing this may be a trap, knowing the Careers may be poised to attack me, but I can’t help myself. There’s another high-pitched cry, this time my name. “Katniss! Katniss!”

Ok, I know I called it, but could this not happen right now? Just…fuck, I like Rue.

When I break into the clearing, she’s on the ground, hopelessly entangled in a net. She just has time to reach her hand through the mesh and say my name before the spear enters her body.

WHAT. THE. FUCK. Collins, you are so very, very evil.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
This entry was posted in The Hunger Games, The Hunger Games (novel) and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

189 Responses to Mark Reads ‘The Hunger Games’: Chapter 17

  1. Lily says:

    Things get even more fucked up in the next chapter. Just you wait, Mark.

  2. phoebe says:

    I loved this chapter so much. It was so intense. Im glad Katniss is finally taking an offensive position

  3. adev0tchka says:

    I was so not prepared for you to read about Rue getting caught in the trap and speared. 🙁

    I was so relieved to find out that Katniss at least had one good ear left. I don't think there'd be any way for her to make it out alive if she'd gone completely deaf from the explosion. Speaking of which…to answer your question, it doesn't seem like she was too far away from the supplies when she shot the apples, maybe at most like fifty yards? Depending on how many mines there were–and it sounds like maybe a dozen or so–that probably would have been enough to send her flying, even from a distance. I'm making this assumption form stories I've heard from my great uncle, who got half his hand blown off during WWII by just two mines that exploded about fifty yards from where he stood.

    • Reonyea says:

      Surely there would be 24 mines, because that's how many tributes there were?

      • exbestfriend says:

        At least 24 mines, but surely the gamemakers would make sure the entire disc the tributes arrived on would be surrounded by the land mines. So possibly more than 24 mines. Then again maybe the boy from District 3 didn’t use all of the land mines, just enough to protect the bounty.

        • adev0tchka says:

          Maybe he did, and maybe he didn't. Either way, there were plenty of mines, and that would have caused a colossal explosion…definitely large enough to send Katniss flying if she was within a mile of the place.

          Makes me wonder if Foxface had enough time to get far enough away to not get hurt, too…

    • monkeybutter says:

      You’re totally right about the explosions. They must be powerful mines since she felt the concussion before she heard the explosion, and shockwaves can do worse than deafen you. I actually like how Collins portrayed this compared to the jump in the air and everyone’s fine explosions you see in movies.

      • Rimma says:

        Right?? I always hate it in movies when the only person who seems to get blown up is the person who steps directly on the mine. Everyone in the immediate vicinity just runs or jumps away, completely unscathed.

    • AccioUsername says:

      I can't even think about it :c
      Is this awesome?
      n/n/n/n/n/n :c

  4. acityofdoors says:

    I've been betting that it's Peeta with the spear. Oh wait! I can read the next chapter now! Hooray!

  5. EldaTaluta says:

    Up until now I was really hoping that Katniss was a decoy protagonist, and the rest of the book would be about Rue. Looks like I was wrong. 🙁

    • Mia says:

      Oh wow. I've never seen any author do something as cool as that before! That would have been AWESOME! (So much love for Rue. SO MUCH.)

      • EldaTaluta says:

        :/ I have a few things I would suggest to you, but the Decoy Protagonist thing is a pretty big twist. My recommendations would spoil it for your I think.

        Also, how sad is it that the +10 on my comment makes me very happy?

  6. thechosenelf says:

    RUE. ohmygosh. The cliffhangers make me so antsy. Even though I’ve already read all the books. Even wondering your reaction makes me antsy. Oh wait, you have the other review up. I SHOULD READ IT now

    PS your reviews make my day, everyday. I’ve been following along since MRHP but i’ve never posted a comment, but I just wanted to let you know how very awesome you are. 🙂

    PPS I shouldn’t be reading this, especially since I have tons of homework and my mom wouldn’t approve because of the language (I’m 12), maybe but whatever. You are still one of my favorite people EVER. <3

  7. mswann says:

    ooh… new review soon please! ps- how come there's no mention of foxface on your list?

  8. Cally_Black says:

    Mark, I believe the ending of this chapter demands a second review today.

    Rue :'(

  9. Silverilly says:

    Yeah, the burns didn't give me the sense of hopelessness that we saw when Harry lost his wand. It was the HEARING that freaked me out. HOW IS SHE SUPPOSED TO DEAL WITH THIS?
    I mean, burns at least have the chance of healing over time. If her hearing is fucked up, she may never get it back.

    • Hermione_Danger says:

      Exactly! And she got something to help the burns, right, but what can her sponsor(s) send to help heal a ruptured eardrum? BAH.

    • feanna says:

      Actually ruptured eardrums do heal on their own. It can take some time though, depending on the severity of the injury. Without medical treatment,I suppose it could go either way. On the other hand, we don't know whether there'll be help from sponsors again.

      What I think is important about the ear injury/ruptured eardrum seems most likely, is that depending on the level of hearing loss (is doesn't have to be absolute) hear direction hearing (aka where is that sound coming from) might be seriously off (for a while). Like hearing Rue scream and running in the right direction would be pretty hard to do without seeing something too.

  10. jahizzle says:

    Rue 🙁 🙁 She gets all the sad faces forever.

  11. Garth says:

    Cato you monster! Well I guess we can't have Katniss and Peeta kill sympathic characters can we?

    Rue, no suprises there.

    Somewhere I suspect the Gamemakers are relieved about Kantiss's stunt. I bet someone was giving them no end of shit about allowing the thing with the mines to happen in the first place.

    • notemily says:

      Right? The Gamemakers really don't like anyone messing with their shit. I find it interesting that that kind of transgression happens so many times in this book–the mines, Katniss shooting the arrow at the Gamemakers' table, the mockingjays. The Capitol lays all these rules and punishments down, but the Districts can find a way to turn them in their own favor.

      • fnoodles says:

        As someone has mentioned in one of the previous chapters, that the books should be seen as a whole. If you look at the three books as one very long book, it answers why this specific hunger game is important. Besides, if you have finished reading hunger games, there's one very important thing that happened near the end that answers your question. 😉

        • Steeple says:

          This counts as a spoiler, guys. =/

          • cait0716 says:

            I'm sorry. The bulk of my comment was inspired by a commentary for a season three BSG episode and honestly had nothing at all the do with the Hunger Games. Ever since the producers of BSG introduced me to the concept of every story needing a reason to exist, I've approached all fiction with that mindset. I didn't think this was a spoiler at all, as I didn't think it applied specifically to The Hunger Games. I'll delete it if you think I ought to, though

    • corporatecake says:

      I think that sometimes, when a tribute wants to do something that's never been seen before, the Gamemakers are interested in seeing how it works, because it does make for much more exciting television (or reading, in our case).

  12. Marina says:

    "Let the Seventy-fourth Hunger Games begin, Cato, I think. Let them begin for real."

    I took this to mean, "You haven't been hungry so far BUT YOU WILL BE NOW, BITCH," rather than, "Shit will now get real."

  13. Kaci says:

    This is one of those times when I really want to say something, but can't, because it's spoilery, so I'm just going to say that you are so unprepared, you have no idea, and it's going to be amazing to watch you get there, because we all probably felt exactly the same as you at this point of the story, too.

  14. Sizzlelucid says:

    Haha "u mad careers" Thank you for that!

    MOAR Fanart?

    <img src=""&gt;

  15. Karen says:

    I thought Katniss wasn’t anywhere near the mines. Why did she feel the blast so heavily?
    Idk exactly how far away from the mines she was, but the mines were pretty powerful because didn't Katniss say that they essentially vaporized a girl who accidentally triggered them one year?

    Let the Seventy-fourth Hunger Games begin, Cato, I think. Let them begin for real.
    I think that the emphasis that Katniss has here is on Hunger. She's taken the Careers food away and now she has a major advantage over them. Now the Games become just as much about basic survival skills as they are about killing, so Katniss actually feels like she has a shot at winning. Thus, for her the Games are actually beginning for real.

    ALSO, how can you NOT post another review today with that ending?! 😮 Collins is so mean sometimes.

  16. lossthief says:

    p.218: Kat, I am disappoint. A true archer would have stayed further away. Also, on the topic of the whole "bleeding ear" thing, why did Kat turn her head to the side? Wasn't she having to look straight towards the mines while she was shooting?
    p.218: I'm glad Collin remembered the dizziness that comes with ear damage, or I would have been pissed.
    p.219: "My only hope is to make it to Rue's copse." At first, I thought that said "Rue's corpse." Guess, it just shows how marked for death Rue is in my head.
    p.219: What's with Kat being so conversational with her narration? Scenes like this are perfect for the disjointed, choppy sentence structure from before.
    p.220: Wow, what an intense death, if I actually knew his name, I might have been concerned. :S
    p.221: About Cato's tantrum and the careers being screwed: Wouldn't it make sense for the careers to train in surviving, in case shit like this happens. Kat says this isn't the first time careers have lost their supplies, so why not train for that?
    p.222: Why have the night vision goggles amounted to precisely nothing so far?
    p.222: "Let them begin for real." Because the 16 dead teenagers were just boring? Glad to know Kat doesn't count disintegrating corpses and cold blooded murder as "intense"
    p.223: I'm thankful that Collins is keeping Kat's hearing loss around. To often that bit would have been dropped since it would mean the MC would actually by handicapped.
    p.224: Now foxface is playing the game
    p.225: CALLING IT NOW: Rue is dead or near it by the end of this chapter.
    p.225: "I wash the blood out of my jacket." Guess there was some oxy clean in Kat's pack that she forgot to mention.
    p.226: Oh, come on. we are not even in the capitol and Katniss is prattling on about food. You can't pull this sudden "Oh I'm starving" bit after Kat has already managed to find an easy way to get her food.
    p.227: SO yeah, this is making me even more sure Rue is a goner. I foresee a sad death scene next chapter.
    p.227: "I think I'll go hunt it down." I cannot take this line seriously.
    p.228: "there's no one in the arena capable of making that sound except Rue." The twist is that it's actually Cato.
    p.228: CALLED IT! I CAN PREDICT FICTIONAL MURDER. Cue a bloodbath next chapter as Katniss goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge!
    Overall, this chapter was just middling. There were parts that I liked, particularly Collin actually giving Kat a hindrance that stuck with her, rather than dropping her hearing loss out of convenience. The whole part about the "Hollow Day" just seemed out of place, and it felt like Collins was trying to milk drama where there was none. If she wanted Katniss to stress about something, it would have felt a lot more natural to have her worrying about where Rue is, instead of her worrying about food, when we've already been shown she doesn't have a problem getting it anymore.
    Grade: "C-"

    • bookling says:

      Well, I am no archery expert, but don't you stand to the side, but with your head facing the target? So Katniss' left side would have already been facing the mines, and then if she started to turn away as the mines went off, her left ear would definitely be facing the explosion.

      • lossthief says:

        I think this comes down to it being sort of unclear as to where the mines were placed, and how long it was before they went off. I'd imagine didn't have a lot of time to turn her head considering the blast hit her right after the apples fell.

        • bookling says:

          Yeah, I think it's just a suspension-of-disbelief, accept-the-facts situation. You just have to take Collins' word for it.

        • Shanella says:

          The way I read it was that the mines were around the food and there was a path to it — Foxface showed Katniss that — so I don't have any idea how far from the food the mines were but I assumed that it was in such a way that when they went off Katniss was near the edge. There were 24 mines to place around the food so that's a lot of space.

          As for the Careers training, it seems as though their idea is to capture the food and then go killing. That means they don't necessarily need to know how to live off the land. Also, suppose their districts were like Katniss with a fence around it so that they cannot go near the woods to learn to hunt for food?

    • BradSmith5 says:

      I named the ashen-faced boy 'Gizmo,' so that I would be affected by his death when it came. I also pretended that he had a blind sister he was going to give the prize money to. :'(

  17. Pan says:

    THIS is why I've always thought that teaming up is stupid stupid stupid. It is so easy to miss the point where you should leave the others.

    Poor boy from district 3. I think he was an awesome guy back home, a great engineer and a helpful, caring friend. Even though I forgot what his district does, he would have had a great future there. Now he's dead because Cato is an emotionless savage. I feel sad for the nameless boy from district 3.

    • corporatecake says:

      District 3 makes electronics, and considering what he did in the Games, you bet that the boy from 3 would have done well at home. 🙁

  18. DameDallas says:

    Collins is a great writer because even though you know it is coming, IT BREAKS YOUR HEART INTO A BADRILLION PIECES.

    *sobs openly*

  19. Yusra says:

    Equal number of boys and girls alive. How awesome. -epically failing at tension-diffusion-

    Mark, you're not prepared.

  20. Patrick says:


    enjoying this review a lot so far! On the subject of the cameras, those are probable the big "gimme" you have to give. The cameras are magic or something. They are never described yet they are seemingly capable of filming everything everywhere. It's my biggest dislike in the books, that there seem to be miniscule, invisible, floating ultra-powerful cameras all around. Just accept that there are. It's magic.

    • MissRose99 says:

      When Stephen King reviewed the book that was one of his biggest pet peeves – the lack of cameras in a televised onslaught. Of course they would have to be "magical" or some kind of "invisible futuristic device" maybe designed around there arm injected trackers?? Think about it — if the other tributes could SEE the cameras following people or positioned around hiding people it would be a total giveaway.

      The games would last like 2 days. Could you see one of the tributes going nuts and taking out a few cameramen?? lol How many people would want to volunteer for that job, let alone direct it – those crazy Capitol assholes!

      • bookling says:

        I also wondered where the sponsor gifts came from. They float down on a little silver parachute, so they must be dropped from a hovercraft or something, right? It seems like it would be easy for a tribute to spot a sponsor gift being dropped down and follow it to another tribute.

        • lossthief says:

          That's what I was thinking. That' why I thought the careers might have been near Kat when she was searching for water a few chapters back and that Haymitch wasn't sending her anything because he didn't want to give away her position.

        • notemily says:

          Well, we know the hovercrafts can appear out of nowhere, so they must have some kind of stealth technology. Maybe they use the same thing for the parachutes, so they just appear out of thin air right above where the tributes are, but not high enough for others to see.

      • Mauve_Avenger says:

        I was thinking it was more of a case of there being millions of tiny cameras hidden in trees and rocks and the like, so there's no need for the cameras to physically follow people around. Then there'd be a team of people to watch all the video feeds and decide which ones to air and what, if anything, needs censoring. Basically, I'm imagining it working like a more complex version of modern CCTV.

        • bookling says:

          This is pretty much the same thing I concluded, too. If there were cameras following them around, surely Katniss would have mentioned it at some point.

    • Quizzical says:

      i think i figured it was like satellite technology or something. like when you see the military stuff in films hone in a little, and then closer and then closer and then you can pick out the individual people.

      so, that but even closer. they track them and there are probably dedicated cameras for each tribute.

      that's how i imagined it, anyway.

      • paulineparadise says:

        " there are probably dedicated cameras for each tribute"

        Have you ever seen that Totally Spies episode in which they have to compete in a gladiator-kind-of-game? There, everyone is followed by tiny cameras (about the size of a hand), which can fly in the air but hide for the people in the game.

  21. Randomcheeses says:

    RUE!!!! T_T

  22. phoebe says:

    i actually dont mind that katniss said "let them begin for real"
    for her, the games were more like surviving and defense, but now she actually will be playing. i think it fits.

    • Alex Steiner says:

      I took it to mean that the *Hunger* Games have begun…now that the no-survival-skill careers have lost their food.

  23. xkcdhobbes says:

    They'll RUE the day! Nobody is allowed to hurt Rue!

  24. andreah1234 says:

    RUEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙁 🙁 D: D: D: D: This is the worse thing since Fred and Lupin, and that's saying a lot, Please Kat, show your never ending RAEG and avenge your semi-little sister death NOW!!!!!! God, I am cheering a bloody murder, what are you doing to me Collins?!?!??! D:

  25. Stephalopolis says:

    Oh District 3 boy. You tried so hard to hang with the cool kids, but all you got out of it was a broken neck. And death.I once had an audition for the school play as one of the lead females. 10 minutes before I was supposed to go on- went completely deaf in one of my ears and partially deaf in the other. Freaked. Me. Out. I had no clue why it happened, or how long it was going to last (it lasted a few hours). Very scary. I can't imagine losing my hearing and being HUNTED AT THE SAME TIME.(in case anyone cares- yes, I still auditioned, no I didn't get the part, but I did get the part of a russian princess. Perhaps my deafness caused me to speak in an accent?)

    • Cherushii says:

      "I thought killing people would make them like you. But it doesn't! it just makes them dead!"
      Lol sorry thats what your comment made me thing of =p

    • lebeaumonde says:

      This makes me think of those lame "I x with y and all I got was this shitty t-shirt" shirts
      "I teamed up with the Careers and all I got was this shitty broken neck"

  26. notemily says:

    God, the hearing loss. So scary. But a lot more realistic than the "cool guys don't look at explosions" thing you see in TV and movies where everyone walks away without a scratch.

    Like, the show Castle, which I know you haven't really watched–there's a scene where someone survives an explosion IN THE SAME ROOM by HIDING IN THE BATHTUB. I DON'T THINK IT WORKS THAT WAY PEOPLE.

    • Three says:

      Oh come on, it’s Castle. The day one of the main characters dies is the day that horror movies are filmed without a “mirror scare” scene.

      • notemily says:

        Yeah, I know, but I was just saying that the fact that they DO put Katniss in actual danger instead of just "TV danger" here makes it seem way more real and brutal while reading the book.

        Don't worry–I don't expect realism from Castle. I expect flirting and hilarious Nathan Fillion.

  27. Karen says:

    Oh, I can’t wait until Katniss kills you. That probably makes me a horrible person, BUT WHATEVER.
    One of the crazy things about this book is that you get so sucked into the Games that you're cheering for Katniss to kill the Careers. You've been caught up in the Capitol's games. It's so easy to forget that the "real" bad guys are the Capitol and the Gamemakers. We've just been pulled into the arena too. It's another way of Collins turning the readers into the voyeuristic audience. We're rooting for Katniss to kill other teenagers. Yes, they train for these Games (although wouldn't you if you could? if you have a chance at being selected anyway, might as well be as prepared as possible) and some of them volunteer. But once the Games begin, they're in a kill or be killed situation, so I don't know how much I can fault them for their ruthlessness.

    So that was a lot of thinking out loud. And now I'm thinking that if maybe the reason that we now tend to view the Careers as the enemies is because a) they volunteer which makes them seem more bloodthirsty and this more deserving of death and b) they start hunting to ill pretty ruthlessly from the beginning of the Games whereas we'd like to see them have more moral qualms or whatever. Idk. I'm just typing the thoughts as they come into my head. haha. Just something for me to ponder, I suppose.

    • Cally_Black says:

      No you can not have dead Mufasa and a crying Will Schuester in the same comment. Just….there is not enough sadfaces in the world. :'( :'( :'(

  28. Penquin47 says:

    ::hugs Rue on the Astral Plane, where she has some sort of SUPER BODY ARMOR that let her survive::

    Still, Katniss. You knew it was a trap. You're handicapped. Rue had NO chance and you knew it. Why did you just rush in instead of assessing the situation and seeing what if anything could be done to avenge Rue?

    I do love that Katniss is handicapped and she's actually going to suffer a bit for it. This NEVER happens in books or stories. "Lost your leg? Here, have a replacement that will only cause actual problems for you when it's plot-convenient!" Not that I particularly minded before, but this makes me mind the burn healing potion and Rue knowing the trackerjacker leaves any less. I'm really enjoying how Katniss solves one problem only to find herself in one that's at least as bad if not worse. Makes the Games feel real.

  29. Moonie says:


    I love Foxface. She's one of my absolute favorite HG characters.

    Also Rueeee )))':

  30. potlid007 says:

    Katniss, stop complaining about your ear. some characters don't have an ear. aka GEORGE WEASLEY. so STFU. I'm sorry, too soon?

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

    this chapter at first I was all for it and then I was like..ehhhh. I mean, I love cliffhangers, but this is getting a little ridiculous. we're reading your book, Collins, this isn't a pilot for a tv show.

    GIF reaction for this chapter:
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">
    Yeah, I don't even know..

    • Penquin47 says:

      She may still have the ear, but at least George can still hear out of that side of his head!

    • Tabbyclaw says:


    • Suspicious Cookie says:

      DOCTOR WHO GIF SQUEE *standard reaction of excitement*

      Katniss is definitely allowed to complain about her ear. She's in a competition where one wrong move could end up killing her. Having the hearing on one side shot means that she's heavily handicapped in these games, and could actually end up dead. It hurts her chances of survival, which is …a bit of a priority right now for her.

    • lebeaumonde says:

      cliffhangers are just as important in books. Rowling does it ALL the time.
      they keep you reading, and it makes the stale moments seem less stale when they are always mid-chapter.

  31. ilram says:

    Hey Mark you should just call the girl Foxface in your table 🙂

  32. Revolution64 says:

    You didn't cross off Rue in your chart. *cries*

  33. cait0716 says:

    Up until I read this chapter I was so sure that somehow Katniss, Peeta, and Rue would all be able to win the games. Like there'd be some sort of fluke and a three-way tie would be allowed. Or that the "good" guys (those three plus Foxface, Thresh, and whoever else), would team up and refuse to kill each other in a massive act of rebellion. But then Rue died (or it was implied pretty heavily that she died). And suddenly the fact that Peeta would probably die became much more inescapable. And everything was so tragic that I didn't even want to read anymore. But I was on a plane, and there was nothing else to do, so I finished the book.

    • Silverilly says:

      But I was on a plane, and there was nothing else to do, so I finished the book.
      This was such a beautifully sad post, but that cracked me up. XD "OH GOD. THIS IS HORRIBLE. OH GOD I CAN NOT READ ANY MORE . . . wait, there's how many hours until we land? . . . eh. To tragedy."

  34. samibear says:

    I'm sorry, but Katniss losing her hearing in this chapter…DID. NOT. LIKE. I remember while I was reading it for the first time, I kept tilting my head to the side and touching my ear like a madwoman, that's how much I didn't like it. And I waited the whole chapter for Katniss to get her hearing back, and Collins never gave it to me. Thank you Suzanne for slapping me in the face with reality. 🙁

    The thought of losing your hearing permanently, the disorientation you must feel, really frightens me. And this happens to Katniss at the worst time possible.

    Oh, and my poor, sweet Rue. You can't forget that she was only TWELVE, the poor thing. These Games are pure evil, and that is all.

  35. pennylane27 says:

    Don't have much to add, except that OMG HEARING LOSS IS TERRIBLE

    • TheRedQueen says:

      No button forever :'(

      The hearing loss thing freaked me out more than it should have (and more than a lot of other things in the book). Like, I read through all these brutal deaths, then I get to the part where Katniss goes deaf in one ear and I'm like OMG WHY D: It's just….I've had my hearing disabled before (in the left ear no less) and it's soooo unsettling. And I wasn't in immediate danger of being killed at any given moment, so I assume Katniss is a tad bit more freaked out than I was.

      Mark please please please review Chapter 18 today? You know you want to. (though I've read the books, these cliff hangers are KILLING me – espeically when you go one chapter at a time. You are a madman and I love you for it! I can't imagine how you stop yourself from going on)

    • potlid007 says:

      I'm not dead yet!

    • Silverilly says:

      Dear Severus, I'd forgotten about that thing.

  36. Kylie says:

    I distinctly remember screaming in horror at the end of this chapter. WHHHHHY? WHY HAS THE CUTEST GIRL EVER BEEN SPEARED?

  37. skillwithaquill says:

    Rue getting impaled is so, so awful. And the fact that Katniss called her "my little ally" earlier in the chapter just shreds my heart in pieces. :(:(:(

  38. paulineparadise says:

    OH NOES I HAD SO MANY GOOD PICTURES FOR THIS CHAPTER BUT THIS ISN'T MY COMPUTER AND – wait I had one of them favourited on my deviantart! -Happydance-

    <img src=""&gt;

  39. Robyn says:

    you should write in "Foxface" instead of "Girl"

  40. Shanella says:

    I guess the boy from district 10 was insignificant ….

  41. Amy says:

    I… Well… yeah. Figuring out how to discuss things like this, that have mini cliffhangers, is difficult when you know how it all ends. I love that I do (the best thing about the HP reviews was reading Mark fall in love with the series and see his reactions to plot twists us old fans just take for granted so much), but it makes it harder to comment.

    EAR LOSS. D: I can’t imagine not having hearing. And in her situation… bad bad bad.

    Rue. 🙁

  42. Shanella says:

    8 out of 24 left; how many days have we been in the arena?

    • lossthief says:

      either 9 or 10 days I think.

      • phoebe says:

        wow why was i under the impression that it was like 5 days

        • lossthief says:

          because Kat lost a couple of days after the Tracker Jacker stings, so the time line gets a little hazy. It appears I added a day in there somewhere too.

    • Mauve_Avenger says:

      Chapter 11, the first arena chapter, starts seemingly somewhere in the mid-to-late morning and ends at around dawn the next day. So from there:
      Chapter 12: from dawn until a few hours after the anthem plays. 2 days.
      Chapter 13: few hours after anthem plays until evening, just before anthem plays. 3 days.
      Chapter 14: Starts at evening, Kat takes wasp nest down at dawn. Ends morning of same day when Kat loses consciousness. Rue says in Ch.15 that Kat missed 2 nights, so that's 5 days.
      Chapter 15: Starts afternoon of the unspecified day, ends evening. 6 days.
      Chapter 16: Starts as anthem finishes, ends few hours before anthem starts in evening. 7 days.
      Chapter 17: Starts before evening sets, ends some time in late afternoon/early evening. 8 days.

    • bendemolena says:

      1. Normal day.
      2. Brown pee day.
      3. Wall of fire day?
      4. Tracker jackers.
      5. Still passed out and hallucinating from tracker jackers?
      6. Maybe still hallucinating, but also maybe Find Rue Day?
      7. Exploding food day
      8. I think this is where we are now?

      I could be very wrong, I'm doing this off the top of my head.

  43. Mad_Mim says:

    My thoughts on this chapter:

    <img src=>

  44. paulineparadise says:

    I just noticed one of the tags is 'so fucked up'. Heheheh.

    • Silverilly says:

      He's used that tag on like every review for this book. Apparently The Hunger Games is just generally fucked up (as if we didn't know).

  45. kayla says:

    Truthfully this chapter had me sobbing. It's just so hopeful and then everything goes tragic.

    • bendemolena says:

      Right? I burst out ugly crying at the end of the chapter. I have a brother Rue's age and the thought of him being hurt like that just destroyed me for like an hour.

  46. Phoebe says:

    why is everybodys picture a monster?! this is SO COOL!

  47. spiffy says:

    brb crying forever

  48. hazelwillow says:

    Two comments:
    1. Katniss's ear was the first thing in this book that really scared me. It's like a nightmare scenario, when she's relying so much on her senses just to survive. It was a tiny bit like when Harry Potter's wand got snapped (except about 1000x less important to me. I didn't legitimately worry over Katniss's ear for DAYS like i did Harry's wand.)

    2. I think the culpability for the deaths in the hunger games is really with the Capitol and the Game makers, so I don't think the children "should" feel guilt for the murders they commit. That said, some of them (or all of them) turn into monsters, and it's unrealistic to expect that the trauma and guilt wouldn't plague any hunger games survivors (also I haven't even gotten to the end of this book yet, so no implicit spoilers in here).
    To make a possibly unwise comparison to the real world, this is why there are international treaties to protect and rehabilitate, not punish, former child soldiers (even though the US and Canada are currently stomping all over them… BUT that's another issue). Because when it comes down to it, they are being put in a situation by adults, not by themselves.

    I wonder what would happen if all the contestants refused to fight? I guess the game masters would bombard them till they had not choice. 🙁

    • bibliotrek says:

      I wonder what would happen if all the contestants refused to fight?

      When I started the book this is totally where I expected it to go. I thought this was going to be the story of how Katniss convinced her fellow tributes to rebel against the system by refusing to fight at all. CLEARLY I SUCK AT PREDICTING.

    • corporatecake says:

      I think that if everyone refused to fight, the Gamemakers would just blow them up or something.

      Plus, I think that that's terribly unlikely. Out of 24 people, there's going to be at least one of them who will be like, "Fuck I don't want to kill anyone but I don't want to die, I'm trying to win this thing."

  49. karadudz says:

    Way to ruin the moment of hope Collins =(
    Way to bring my hopes up about Rue and then ending the chapter like that…

    ACTUALLY. Since I read this book really quickly I didn't even realize that the ending to this chapter was a spear going through Rue's body.

    Now that's intense. I feel for you Mark.

    Hang in there! Shouldn't you be used to Collins' cliffhangers by now anyway? =P

  50. 4and6forever says:

    I was first reading this chapter, and when I came across the ‘spear enters her body line, I was like, “oh Collins, you aren’t really going to kill off Rue, right? Right? Right?! RIGHT?!?!??!!!”
    and then I started sobbing but not really because my tear ducts don’t work at midnight. (when I was reading it.) so on the outside i was , but on the inside I was . COLLINS, WHY DO YOU TORTURE US SO?!

  51. bendemolena says:

    ..So how evil will it be if Mark posts a Harry Potter review today instead of Chapter 18?


  52. Kadi says:

    Any chance you'd be willing to put Foxface up as the name on the chart? I know there are only a few girls left, but I can never remember where she's from, and it's getting hard to figure out who's alive and who's not on the chart. 😛

  53. Clare says:

    "Let the Seventy-fourth Hunger Games begin, Cato, I think. Let them begin for real."

    I saw this as Katniss telling Cato he was going to have to deal with Hunger the same way all the rest of them do- figuring out some way to live off of the environment.

  54. dumbxblonde07 says:

    "Let the Seventy-fourth Hunger Games begin, Cato, I think. Let them begin for real."

    – okay, I see your point in saying this was a dumb thing to say, because for Kat, the games are very real and have been for a while. For Cato, who's been able to return to a base camp and have food and be pretty comfortable, they really haven't begun. Now, they have.

    Also, I've caught up to you in one night. I was going to read chapter by chapter with you, but I'm not sure I can…. I don't think I'll be able to stop here. Also, and this is horrible, I'm hoping that this spear will kill Rue. Not because I don't like her character, but because I don't want Kat to have to do it later on….

  55. dumbxblonde07 says:

    Also, about the cameras, I'm picturing a "Truman Show" setup – hidden everywhere. (If you've never seen it, go watch now!)

  56. Warmouh says:

    It's okay guys. Rue will be fine.

    Come on Rue, just walk it off. It's just a flesh wound.

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