In a move that was a surprise and delight to most fans, Suzanne Collins announced yesterday that a new Hunger Games book will be hitting shelves next year. And as much as we might love some scenes of domestic bliss between Peeta and Katniss, this story is going to be a prequel set 64 years before the events of The Hunger Games. The book is as of yet untitled, but Collins gave us a look at the cover as well as a brief summary.
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 10 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.
This is an intriguing choice, and I’m in. If I knew there was going to be a prequel to this story and I had to guess when it would be set I would have said we’d be seeing even further back in time, to right before the war, and see exactly what happened to bring it about. But this timeline does allow her to bring in some characters we already know. Sixty-four years before the setting of the original series will place this book somewhere around the 10th or 11th Hunger Games (depending on how much time is covered), and many fans may remember that our beloved Mags was the Victor of the 11th Games. It also occurred to me that President Snow could make an appearance as a child. As a resident of the Capitol, he wouldn’t have been a participant, but would without a doubt have been watching. Getting a glimpse of him before he became the monstrous dictator we know him to be could be disturbingly fascinating. There’s a possibility that older generations of the Everdeen and Mellark family might play a part in some capacity. I wouldn’t expect them to be main characters though, and I’m sure there will also be a whole host of new heroes that we’ll become attached to before we have our hearts shattered by whatever awful things are going to happen to them.
I love this series, it’s one of my all time favorites, and I haven’t been able to read the books or really even watch the movies in the past few years. As tentatively hopeful (very, very tentatively) as the end of Mockingjay is, everything that happens before then is a lot for me to take with the world in the state it’s in right now. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but things are…not good. I’m interested to see how Suzanne Collins is going to write a book about a Panem that we know is going to suffer through decades more of the Games in a way that isn’t going to be so depressing readers won’t be able to make it through.
In addition to the book, Lionsgate announced that they’ve already all but officially committed to a movie adaptation of this new book.
As the proud home of the ‘Hunger Games’ movies, we can hardly wait for Suzanne’s next book to be published. We’ve been communicating with her during the writing process and we look forward to continuing to work closely with her on the movie.
Fingers crossed that things go smoother than when they committed to splitting Allegiant into two films.
Fans have to wait until May 19th, 2020 to actually get our hands on the book and in the meantime I hope this news really reinvigorates the fandom. It’s one of the better ones I’ve been a part of and I’ve missed how exciting it used to be when news like this would drop. A new book and a new movie will suit us just fine for the next few years.