The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Book - 2020
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LESeymour
May 15, 2021

What I haven't seen anyone else mention I'll quickly carp about. The page numbers start repeating from time to time. For instance 2 x 338 !! (as one example). I therefore don't have a clue which page I'm really on. BTW, this doesn't mean the pages are repeated, just the numbers!

This is a good prequel to the Hunger Games books. I have a feeling it would NOT lend itself well to a movie but, I could be wrong.

woermkeja May 14, 2021

I have a love and hate relationship with this book. I was so excited to dive back into Panem and loved the concept of the storyline. I was intrigued to find out how Snow had managed to become the man we know him to be. I found that the book missed the mark a little bit when it came to explaining his personality though. I love Lucy Gray as a character and found most of the characters so well fleshed out. The ending just felt very rushed for me.

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Aylagurr
May 02, 2021

So good, it is amazing how the author connected it to the hunger games books.

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blue_dove_745
Apr 16, 2021

I'm reading right now.
P.S. read the dead and the gone along with the rest of the series
(I want to make a suggestion read the maze runner (it's great .))

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SR806
Apr 15, 2021

I really enjoyed another book that had the Hunger Games in it. Suzanne Collins does an excellent job of keeping my interest in her books. Coriolanus and Lucy Gray were the main characters, but there were several more characters that were interesting, too.

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min13
Apr 09, 2021

Coriolanus Snow, 18, is preparing for his one chance at glory as a coach in the Hunger Games at the start of the tenth annual Hunger Games. He's been assigned the humiliating task of mentoring the lowest of the low tribute from District 12. Their fates are now inseparably connected. This is a book that Suzanne Collins decided to publish, about a decade after the last installment of the Hunger Games, Mockingjay. I was looking forward to reading this book because I was curious as to what else Collins had to add ten years after the ending. Alongside this, I was excited to see how this book would play out since it was about President Snow who was known to be the face of the ruthless Capitol’s dystopian government. I found this book not as exciting as the Hunger Games trilogy as it felt pretty slow and dull at times. However, it was interesting how Suzanne Collins wrote 18-year-old Snow’s character. She didn’t justify any of his actions or outright write him as a villain but instead makes the point that villainy does not emerge out of thin air, and there might not be a single point at which someone becomes evil, it’s just a series of actions that may lead down that path. I would recommend Hunger Games fans to read this book because it was interesting to read more about Snow as well as read the Hunger Games in a different style and tone.

I wasn't sure how I'd feel about reentering the world of the Hunger Games, but I enjoyed it immensely. I love how Suzanne Collins can work such structure into her novels and mixes the familiar with the new. What drives this from an engrossing, intense read up to the level of a fave for me is the moral philosophy that Collins weaves through her words.

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indigo_butterfly
Apr 06, 2021

The Ballad of the Songbirds & Snakes shows us the life of young Corolanious Snow. Yep! This book is about President Snow, as a teen. It explains to us why he turns out the way he is.
The book shows us a love story between Snow, and another girl from District 12, Lucy Gray Baird.
By the end of the story, we see how power and pride can change a person.

We get to see how the Hunger Games are formulated, how the authorities make it more interesting for the citizens of the Capital - and a lot of it is from Snow's ideas.
We meet the character, that I think, personally, shaped President Snow - Dr. Gaul.

We realize why the Capital likes the Hunger Games, because they think they suffered a lot in the war, they don't realize the Districts had suffered too.

Remember Tigris from Mockingjay? Well, she's in this story too - and if you've read the other books already, it's a surprising position she's in now, compared to later, in the Mockingjay novel.

The book is a bit slow at times, but nonetheless, I enjoyed it well! :)

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brucechrumka
Mar 27, 2021

This book was a painful 'back-to-the trough' sequel that has no humor, no imagination and brings nothing to the original trilogy. Frankly, it's poorly written torture porn, half-baked for an audience stunned by 'reality' TV and real-world violence.

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Suzanne_A
Mar 26, 2021

As soon as the book came to a close and my mind was blown, I knew for sure this was and is my new favourite book. The plot was so enticing and incredibly played out and I really admire the boldness of the author with the characters (if you know what I mean).
As well as continually putting me on the edge of my seat, the interesting ideas, questions and conflicts had me deep in thought along with Coriolanus. The author didn't fail to surprise me and this prequel sets the base for Coriolanus' character seen in the other books in the Hunger Games series excellently. I can easily say it's the best book in the series (in my opinion) - great writing and delivery!

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darladoodles
Mar 25, 2021

Is Snow falling down? Or will Snow land on top? I put off reading this prequel. After all, Snow is probably one of if not my least favorite characters. Give it 50 pages, I told myself. If it is not working, you can DNF and return it to the library. Then I started reading. Suzanne Collins did an amazing job of sketching out the origins of the Hunger Games we know and still hiding surprises galore. I gave up trying to guess how it would end. When I got to that last page, the ending was even more appropriate than I imagined. So many pieces have been put in place. It is like a laser pointer aimed straight at Katniss Everdeen. This would be a fascinating book to discuss with a book group. The debates that could be had regarding courage, conflict and contract. . . I know I am going against popular opinion, but that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Barrie_Teen_Lists Mar 22, 2021

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins is the fourth book to be released in the Hunger Games series. It acts as a prequel to the other three books, taking place more than a half-century before. It details the life and struggles of a then young President Snow of Panem. This book was highly anticipated by many readers, including myself.

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Andreaquach
Mar 16, 2021

In this prequel of The Hunger Games, we see Panem and the 10th annual Hunger Games through the eyes of teenager Coriolanus Snow. The Academy’s top 24 students are selected to mentor the 24 tributes chosen for the Hunger Games, one boy and one girl from each of the 12 districts. Lucy Gray, the girl from District 12, is Coriolanus’s tribute, and immediately she shines like a star. Together, Coriolanus and Lucy Gray win the Capitol’s favor through her singing and character, and along the way build a relationship stronger with each other. When the time arises for the tributes to fight for lives in the Games, Coriolanus takes measures that keep Lucy Gray alive- risky measures that won’t go without consequence.
I was so hooked on this story and especially the past of Panem’s future president, Coriolanus Snow. He was such a strong character to watch develop more and more, using his wits and intelligence to stay on top. His life was anything but glamorous, but he excelled despite his rough past and poverty. I also really loved his relationship with Tigris- it makes him seem more human.
The ending was a twist I didn’t expect and truly reveals the Coriolanus Snow that we know and see in the Hunger Games series, despite everything he endured. If you love The Hunger Games books, this prequel will only make you love this series more- but of course you don’t have to read the Hunger Games to immerse yourself in this book. I recommend this book for teens/young adults into dystopian, adventure, and action.

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lizardkitten
Mar 09, 2021

First of all, I loved the hunger games trilogy! I also really enjoyed this book as well. Getting insight into Snow’s childhood and backstory was heartbreakingly eye-opening and after reading this I immediately started reading the hunger games again. Definitely worth reading, and learning how the hunger games evolve into the games we find Kathiss in years later. Give it a try, it’s an easy read and interested me from the start.

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Silver_Moon_7
Mar 01, 2021

I would rate this book 4/5 stars. It is a prequel to the Hunger Games series and is about the backstory of the cold-blooded villain Coriolanus Snow. Coriolanus is an 18-year-old living in the Capitol, preparing to be a mentor to a tribute in the Hunger Games. Coriolanus’ family has fallen on hard times, and he has to try his best to mentor the winning tribute to win a full scholarship to the University. Coriolanus is also determined to outshine his fellow classmate, Sejanus Plinth, who is wealthy and well-known.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed the Hunger Games series and to fans of dystopian novels. Coriolanus Snow is an intricate character who takes his public image very seriously and takes any measure to preserve it. There was some violence, but the book leaves most of it to your imagination. It was a little bit slow-moving at some points, but most of the book keeps you engaged and interested.

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middlemonkey
Mar 01, 2021

This is a worthy prequel to the Hunger Games trilogy featuring Coriolanus Snow's life before presidency over Panem. This book ends in a way that I at first believed was "unfinished," because it left room for thinking about "what could have happened." Somehow, in this book, that didn't annoy me as much as most books do when they leave the ending open to the speculation of the reader, but it made sense for the mysterious aspect to the story. Overall excellent book. Suggested for ages 13+

jcljessicaj Feb 01, 2021

The Hunger Games series is the only thing I've reread multiple times. The story is truly fascinating, and I uncover something new with each reread, so I was THRILLED to get my hands on this prequel. President Snow is such a ruthless, intriguing character, and one can't help but wonder what makes him tick. This story gives you a peek inside. I wasn't quite what I was expecting, but I just loved the story. Suzanne Collins is an incredible author. The story had me wondering, theorizing, and connecting the dots until the very last page. Now I have to read the series again, so I can catch all the call backs!

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Eva0502
Jan 31, 2021

One word: confusing.
Or maybe it was because I skimmed it. It was personally a bit boring...
Everyone’s giving it such good reviews tho...

IndyPL_TammieB Jan 27, 2021

It was fun unpacking more of Panem's history and sharing the origin of the early Hunger Games: the source of the hanging tree song, why Snow despised Katniss so much from the get-go, and how certain features of the games were implemented, etc. It was really interesting. If you’re someone who knows the original books super well, then I think you’ll get the most enjoyment out of it. There’s so many references and nods to the original books that made me so excited! I also thought Snow’s perspective was super interesting to be in and it gave us loads of information about the world of Panem.

lgmosher Jan 23, 2021

The best thing about this book was the title....
.... And little else.

Disappointment, disappointment all around!

You thought Snows character sucked in the trilogy.... Oh Collins gas taken it to a whole new level!

He not only wants to make you pull your hair out now but also BASH your head against the wall until you fall unconscious to save yourself from the boredom of this book.

I LOVED the hunger games, it's one of my go to references... But honestly, I'm hoping I can forget that this happened.

It was a lot of nothing happening..... I felt like I was at the DMV waiting for my number to be called. Sure, the workers look busy... But they're really playing solitaire instead of calling my number.

---- boring ----

She set herself up for failure because her trilogy was just so great. Move on to another story and leave the hunger games to be the wonderfulness that it is.

Aaaannnnnddddddd.... I'm just gonna be real for a moment, no one NOT ONE read the hunger games and went

"huh, I really want to know more about Snow".

Nah, we all wanted him to die a 100 deaths *shrug* sucks to suck Snow.

Just, don't bother.... It ain't worth it.

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CalebCulbertson
Jan 22, 2021

Amazing book, almost as good as the original series.

SAPL_Teens Jan 20, 2021

We all know the horrendous President Snow. The one that had no heart, who tried to kill Katniss many times, encouraged the slaughter of youth, and murdered Prim. Well, he wasn’t always this way. This sequel to the Hunger Games trilogy dives into the origin story of one of the series most hated characters. Did you know Snow started off dirt poor. He kept a good name and reputation using charm. A slippery one. He is a snake after all, weaving words and looks. Saying what the people want to hear. Manipulation is an easy task if it means survival. Suzanne Collins took my breath away more times than I could count in this twisted story. There are so many things I wish I could warn you about before picking up this novel. It will play with your emotions and make you question whose side you’re on. I can only advise that you keep your wits about you. And remember; May the odds be ever in your favour. 3.5/5 stars - SAPL Read It & Review Contributor

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Linyarai
Jan 20, 2021

I am so in love with this book I am hesitant to start something else. I loved The Hunger Games, but found this to be almost better. Between the characters and the world building it was really well done, and even though the ending was a bit rushed and very "wait, what's happening" it explains a lot about him and their future.

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FPL_CassieW
Jan 16, 2021

This Hunger Games prequel really allows the reader to see Snow in a different light. Now I must re-read the series!

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PeteCarrollsboy
Jan 04, 2021

With this book being a prequel, I have to say it was amazing. Knowing what Snow had to go through I view him in a different way now.


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