Out now: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins, new Hunger Games novel

Almost ten years after the last novel of the Hunger Games trilogy, Mockingjay, bestselling author Suzanne Collins has a new novel also set in Panem: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.

The Hunger Games trilogy was very popular in the 2000s. Most of us are probably familiar with the story of Katniss Everdeen and The Hunger Games. In a post-apocalyptic world, Panem, a state which was once known as North America, stages an annual Hunger Games where 24 tributes from its 12 Districts fight to the death. This is Panem's way of controlling the districts and preventing another uprising. The 12 Districts work to the bone to support the lavish lifestyle of the Capitol. The Hunger Games in the story is part beauty pageant, reality show, gladiator game, and the Minotaur's Labyrinth.

The four movie adaptations ran from 2012-2015, with the last novel made into two movies: Mockingjay Part 1 and Part 2. The movies has also been blockbuster hits, starring Jennifer Lawrence as the main protagonist Katniss Everdeen. Read my books and movies review of the trilogy: The Hunger Games trilogy (books and movies)

This new book is a prequel focusing on the story of one of the main antagonists of the trilogy, Coriolanus Snow, the ruler of Panem. The book is set 64 years before The Hunger Games. 

"With this book, I wanted to explore the state of nature, who we are, and what we perceive is required for our survival. The reconstruction period ten years after the war, commonly referred to as the Dark Days—as the country of Panem struggles back to its feet—provides fertile ground for characters to grapple with these questions and thereby define their views of humanity," said the author Suzanne Collins. 

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is published by Scholastic Press, ©2020. 

Due to COVID-19, access to bookstores might be limited. Amazon is accepting orders for the physical books but they do not guarantee exact delivery dates. Interested readers can buy the book online:

Buy the book on Google Play Books (ebook) or Amazon

You might need to download their apps to read. I pre-ordered mine via Google Play. 

Book Summary from Google Books:
It is the morning of the reaping that will kick off the tenth annual Hunger Games. In the Capitol, eighteen-year-old Coriolanus Snow is preparing for his one shot at glory as a mentor in the Games. The once-mighty house of Snow has fallen on hard times, its fate hanging on the slender chance that Coriolanus will be able to outcharm, outwit, and outmaneuver his fellow students to mentor the winning tribute.

The odds are against him. He's been given the humiliating assignment of mentoring the female tribute from District 12, the lowest of the low. Their fates are now completely intertwined - every choice Coriolanus makes could lead to favor or failure, triumph or ruin. Inside the arena, it will be a fight to the death. Outside the arena, Coriolanus starts to feel for his doomed tribute . . . and must weigh his need to follow the rules against his desire to survive no matter what it takes.

About the Author
Suzanne Collins is the author of the bestselling Underland Chronicles series, which started with Gregor the Overlander. Her groundbreaking young adult novels, The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay, were New York Times bestsellers, received wide praise, and were the basis for four popular films. She returned to the world of Panem with The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes. To date, her books have been published in fifty-three languages around the world.

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