Thursday, August 12, 2010

Character Connection: Katniss Everdeen


The Introverted Reader has invited us to share our favorite characters. Check out her blog and share your favorites! **There may be some spoilers in this post, so be warned if you have not read the first book in the Hunger Games series!**

I am obsessed (just a little) with the Hunger Games. Most of this obsession comes from teaching this novel twice last year. There is nothing like teaching a book to get to know it inside and out. With every reading, I grew to love the book and the main character, Katniss Everdeen more and more.

Going into the Hunger Games unit that I'd prepared, I was a little nervous that Katniss would not be entirely relate-able to my seniors. I had a class filled with boys. And, these boys were rowdy. Quickly, though, my fears were assuaged when Katniss earned their respect. What did it? Her survival skills and prowess. 

I do not know much about hunting. Or fishing. Or survival, really. I'd be the first one to go in the Hunger Games if I were forced to take part. Katniss, though, she really knows how to put a meal on the table, avoid the peacekeepers, take care of her family, and is gorgeous all the while. (I think that a few of my boys had book crushes on her. They'd never admit it, but they got all smiley whenever she made out with Peeta!)

Even more than her skill, Katniss is honest and has high morals. She enters into a game that is corrupt and cruel and unfair and somehow makes choices that are respectable and true to who she is. Yes, she uses her connection with Peeta to help get sponsorship and to sway the audience, but she doesn't exactly use him. She cares about him. Lots of bloggers think (and hope) that they'll even end up together in the end. 

And, a true test of character comes in with her relationship with Rue. Rather than use Rue to her advantage (or kill her off after she's less useful), Katniss risks her life and her safety with the government to give Rue a proper sending off. Ultimately, this act helps the rebellion. But, this was not the reason behind Katniss's song and the flower arrangement. Unlike any other tribute, she cared about the life of someone in the games more than her own. 

I can't wait to see Katniss in book three of this series. I truly hope that she embraces her role as a leader of the rebellion and becomes a voice of change in Panem. She has power beyond her own understanding and is probably one of the best heroines I've ever met. Only twelve days left until we see her in action!

6 comments:

  1. Wow, awesome post. I wish I was assigned this book when I was in high school.

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  2. Fabulous post.

    You have Katniss down perfectly. It really does make a difference when you get a chance to teach a book. You gain so much more out of a book that way.

    The only thing I missed was how Gale's influences help shape Katniss' character, which is why I am rooting for him and not Peeta.

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  3. "(I think that a few of my boys had book crushes on her. They'd never admit it, but they got all smiley whenever she made out with Peeta!)"

    That's so cute!! And I totally agree with you, Katniss is one of my favourite female protagonists. She's smart and true. She stands up for what she believes in and I know that she'll go to the ends of the world for the people she cares about.

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  4. @ Jan: I agree. Gale is a better fit. I'm trying to stay out of the Peeta vs Gale thing as much as possible, though, because I think I might enjoy a series where the heroine is okay without a man...But, I'd choose Gale. In fact, I think I did! My husband is very much like him. (And a total hottie!)

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  5. I am so behind! I've got to read Hunger Games soon.

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  6. Can you believe that you are the first person to write about Katniss as a Character Connection?!?

    This was a fantastic post. You hit on a lot of scenes that I had almost sort of forgotten about. Rue! How could I forget about her?

    I think I might beat you to being taken out first. I would be hopeless at this kind of thing.

    I also like what you said about having a heroine who's just fine on her own for a change. I like Gale but I like your option as well.

    Can't wait for Mockingjay! And my little library will probably take forever to get it in. :(

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