The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Brazos County officials are distributing free backpacks, school supplies and gift cards for K-12 students on July 12 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Bryan High Silver Campus Cafeteria.
Brazos County to distribute free school supplies
‘Back to School Bash’ invites K-12 families on July 12
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 11, 2024
Graduate G Tyrece Radford (23) drives to the basket during Texas A&Ms game against Nebraska in the first round of the 2024 NCAA Tournament at FedExForum in Memphis, Tennessee, on Friday, March 22, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
How Tyrece Radford can catch the attention of NBA scouts
Roman Arteaga, Sports Writer • July 10, 2024

After 5 years of college basketball at Virginia Tech and Texas A&M, Tyrece Radford is furthering his athletic career with the San Antonio...

Craig Reagans 1973 brown Mach 1 Mustang features custom stickers of Craig and his wife, and is completely rebuilt from the ground up. The interior was completely torn out and replaced with new dashboard and radio.
Compassion in the car community
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • July 9, 2024

This past Sunday, Cars and Coffee welcomed exactly one car: a sleek, brown Mustang that stood alone like a lone ranger in the Wild West. This...

Chancellor John Sharp during a Board of Regents meeting discussing the appointmet of interim dean Mark Welsh and discussion of a McElroy settlement on Sunday, July 30, 2023 in the Memorial Student Center.
Analysis: Chancellor Sharp’s retirement comes with new dilemmas
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 2, 2024

Texas A&M System Chancellor John Sharp announced Monday he will be retiring on June 30, 2025.  A figure notorious in state politics,...

‘The Hunger Games’ prequel good for die-hard fans, but not casual reader

Photo by Creative Commons
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

After years of relative silence, Suzanne Collins has released a prequel to the best-selling “The Hunger Games” trilogy. Collins’ reappearance into the literary world with her 517-page novel, “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” comes ten years after the final book in the original trilogy, “Mockingjay,” was released. It is not often that we see the author of such an accomplished Young Adult series take a hiatus of this length. One can only hope this time off results in a 5-star read.
Unfortunately, Collins fell a bit short of expectations. The main problem with the book can be summed up in four words: it is too long. If this same story had been compacted into 300-350 pages, it would have been a successful addition to the fictional world of Panem. Instead, it is good, but not great.
“The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” follows a young, 18-year-old Coriolanus Snow. The Snow family is hit hard by the war between the Capitol and the Districts. Coriolanus lives in his old family penthouse with his aging grandmother and cousin, Tigris.
Students from the Academy, including Coriolanus, have been selected to serve as mentors to the tributes of the 10th Hunger Games in an attempt to keep people watching. In a stroke of what he can only see as bad luck, Coriolanus receives the female tribute from District 12, Lucy Gray.
The main problems with this book are the pacing and length. The build-up to The Games is drawn out and the action during them is minimal. The most interesting section of the book happened after The Games ended. This is when readers begin to see more of the twisted Coriolanus Snow from the original trilogy. The characters were interesting, but everything felt as if it should have happened in fewer pages and at a faster pace.
The writing style is undoubtedly Collins, and this helps add nostalgic feelings for those who loved the original trilogy. It was interesting to see origins for some of the technology Katniss and Peeta experience in the 74th Hunger Games. Additionally, readers get to see Coriolanus’ thoughts evolve and turn him into the President Snow many are familiar with.
The length of the novel and the slow pacing make this a difficult book to recommend. It feels nostalgic and is a fair addition to the series, but it is boring at points and takes a while to get through. Fans of “The Hunger Games” should go ahead and give it a shot because of the nostalgic feelings and seeing the Games’ beginnings. Casual readers just looking for a fun book to read should pass.

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