Welcome to the Hunger Games read-along! Beginning July 1st, 2010, we will be reading and chatting about one chapter a day of both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins in anticipation of the release of Mockingjay on August 24th.

In the unlikely event that this is your first read of these amazing books, welcome! And more importantly, beware of spoilers! There will be spoilers.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Hunger Games Chapter 15

Katniss hallucinates through some nightmares:  Prim dies a million ways.  Katniss's father dies again and again.  Tracker jackers are "carefully created to target the place where fear lives in your brain."  I can't think of anything more terrifying.  And it's solid gold.  I'm defecting from the Capitol.

Katniss wakes in pain in a pile of dead leaves.   But she still has water, yay!  She thinks maybe more than a day has passed, even two, which means she missed the anthem/death toll for a bit and doesn't know who's left in the playing field.

She thinks of Gale, wanting to run away.  But thoughts of Gale lead to thoughts of Peeta. (!)  She's as confused about these boys as I am.  But, now she has a bow and arrows!  And creepily, she anticipates shooting a person with them "with pleasure."

Katniss has lost weight, and she's all banged up from the tracker jacker episode.  She finds a stream (okay, this is what, the fourth source of water in the last couple of days, but it took her three days to find the first one?  Hrmph) and shoots a rabbit and finally eats some crackers and jerky.

Mmm, wild turkey!  While she's cooking her latest kill, Rue turns up.  She and Katniss agree to an alliance.  Rue chews up some leaves for the tracker jacker stings, and Katniss shares her burn ointment.  Rue doesn't have any sponsors. (I'll sponsor you, Rue!)  Poor Rue is eating better in the arena than she ever ate at home ("I've never had a whole leg to myself before,") which makes my heart hurt.

Rue reveals that in District 11 they're not allowed to eat the crops, and that if they do, they are whipped and make everyone watch.  Their mayor is very strict.  Katniss reveals (to us, not to Rue) that public whipping is very rare in District 12, although it does happen, and that she and Gale could be whipped daily for poaching in the woods, but the officials buy the meat, and their mayor (Madge's father) "doesn't seem to have much taste for such events."  Rue gets a bit extra food during the harvest so she can work longer, and doesn't have to be in school at that time.  (Do you think this conversation is televised, or do you think it's kept quiet so the districts don't learn too much about each other?)

Katniss and Rue pool food, and Katniss learns a new berry.  Rue has a homemade slingshot, and knows what Katniss's "sunglasses" are:  night vision goggles.  District 11 killed a mentally retarded boy on the spot for trying to keep a pair to play with.  Katniss reflects that 12 seems like a safe haven.

Katniss and Rue share a sleeping bag.  No deaths again today, but Katniss asks about the days she missed.  Just Glimmer and GD4 died (xKatniss, indirectly on purpose).  Rue says Peeta has broken with the Careers.  Rue doesn't think Peeta's love for Katniss is an act.  Katniss can see forever wearing the night glasses, and formulates a plan to make the Careers "hungry."


  1. Do we ever learn from Rue whether K was passed out through 1 or 2 anthems? I think this chapter takes place on either day 6 or 7 of the games.

    Completely impressed when K polishes the blood off of her weapons with moss! Scribbled that tip into my Survival Notebook.

    Hooray for a K-Rue alliance! And extra hoorays for finally learning about other districts. Particularly because Katniss subsequently considers that possibly these other tributes didn't have it as easy as she thought.

  2. Agreed, Sarah! We're supposed to believe that 12 is the worst place in Panem, when it actually seems kind of far from it compared to 11.

    I'd like to form an alliance with you, S. I know how to put on fake eyelashes and I know the square root of 9, so I'm a worthy ally.

  3. I'd love to join your alliance, Heather. I once did a foraging tour of my local park in CT and can identify wild "ramp" onions. We're going to have the tastiest stews!

    I'm also a pretty good face painter. I'll bring my paints and we'll get our camo on! Whooo! Can't wait!

    Getting flashbacks to 9th grade English class when we read "Lord of the Flies." For the duration of our lesson, we role played island survival, and our teacher pitted natural disasters against us! So intense! And there were alliances and drama and the only reality TV we had then was maybe the very first season of MTV's Real World.

  4. In answer to how many nights K missed passed out: Rue tells us she missed 2. Therefore Chapter 15 starts in the afternoon on day 7, for whoever's keeping track!