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The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes (2020)

by Suzanne Collins

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Hunger Games (Prequel)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,7621024,173 (3.67)31
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.… (more)
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» See also 31 mentions

English (98)  Spanish (1)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (101)
Showing 1-5 of 98 (next | show all)
I was not disappointed in the prequel to the Hunger Games series. I found it interesting to see how President Snow came into power and how plots in the Hunger Games came to be. The only thing I did not like, and this pertains to the audiobook version only, is that I did not like the narrator. I was very spoiled by the narrator in the other books in the series. His voices were not good and his singing was horrible. I would have enjoyed it so much more with a different narrator. ( )
  tami317 | Jun 17, 2022 |
The ending was totally unsatisfying. The actions of the characters did not seem to make sense, even to the extent that the author attempted to justify them. Ideally, this prequel would give the reader a better appreciation of The Hunger Games story. To me, it failed. ( )
1 vote MarkLacy | May 29, 2022 |
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins (2020) (3 stars)
This was a prequel story to the events that happened in the Hunger Games Trilogy, set some 60 odd years before we meet Katniss Everdeen in that series. It is the prequel of the villain in those stories, President Snow, so from the beginning you know that this story cannot have a happy ending because it’s the story of the evil guy that helped make the Hunger Games stories so horrifying. Why then would anyone want to read it? Good question. After I read Songbirds and Snakes, I had to watch the movies all over again since it had been a few years since I’d seen them, and I was reminded how graphic those stories really were. There is more horrifying stuff in this book, an early version of the hunger games, abuse, murder, poisoning, cannibalism, hanging, but if you got through the previous stories, you’ll get through this as well. Lucy Gray begins as an interesting character but then becomes pretty stereotypical, along with many of the other characters. Snow’s ‘sometimes’ friend Sejanus is just so stupid you are relieved he’s finally gone.
There’s also a really large cast of characters, a catchy beginning but relatively slow-moving story, too many paragraphs of song ballads, and a lightning fast ending that did not make sense, and to-da! Now you know why Snow is such a bad dude!
It was worth reading if you are a Hunger Games fan, but the story is not told evenly and though you get a hint of how Snow evolves, it somehow does not all add up. I am glad I borrowed it and did not buy it. (3 stars) ( )
1 vote kaida46 | May 27, 2022 |
The story is very well done. We learn the background of the creation of the Hunger Games. Young Snow is not very likeable. He is arrogant and prejudice. We can see why other people like him, but knowing his thoughts I feel like they wouldn't if they knew what we know. It's hard to get invested in his story, when since this is a prequel we know what he will turn out to be.
There were a number of songs in the book and the narrator spoke them in a voice I didn't like, it was rather annoying. I felt like it would have been better to have it sung by someone with a good singing voice. ( )
  nx74defiant | May 26, 2022 |
After you get over the fact that this is a story about future President Snow, it is all good! The 10th annual Hunger Games shows some history of how the games started and changed. It is mostly about Snow, and to what level he will stoop to win. 4.5 stars. Is this going to be a series??? :) ( )
  BarbF410 | May 22, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 98 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Suzanne Collinsprimary authorall editionscalculated
Fontana, SantinoNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"Man is born free; and everywhere he is in chains." - Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Social Contract, 1762
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For Norton and Jeanne Juster
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Coriolanus released the fistful of cabbage into the pot of boiling water and swore that one day it would never pass his lips again.
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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.

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It is the morning of the reaping that will kick off the tenth annual Hunger Games. In the Capital, 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.
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Average: (3.67)
0.5
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1.5 2
2 41
2.5 12
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3.5 41
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