Scholastic shared the news on social media on Monday. The book, which doesn’t yet have a title, is set 64 years before the events of the main trilogy and will publish on May 19, 2020.
If you aren’t familiar with the original “Hunger Games” trilogy, let me provide some context. Written by Suzanne Collins, the series follows Katniss Everdeen, who lives in the poorest district of a post-apocalyptic country called Panem. Each year, the country chooses two young people from each of the 12 districts to fight to the death in a televised event known as the Hunger Games.
In the first novel, Katniss competes in the 74th Hunger Games after volunteering in the place of her sister. She manages to survive, but the unusual manner of her victory fuels another rebellion, which grows and culminates in the second and third novels of the trilogy.
The series mentions that the Games were created in response to a failed past rebellion against the Capitol of Panem, called the Dark Days. The new book will take place 10 years after this failed rebellion, around the time of the 10th Hunger Games.
This is obviously well before the time of Katniss Everdeen, and even before the time of Haymitch Abernathy, who mentors Katniss in the original novels. Not much is known about the 10th Hunger Games, but some fans may already be familiar with the 11th Games, in which Finnick Odair’s mentor, Mags, was the victor.
I, for one, am intrigued by this new installment, but I wonder why it didn’t come sooner. The original series ended almost a decade ago, and the movie adaptations of the books wrapped up in 2015.
It seems like some of the momentum has been lost, but given the popularity of the original trilogy, I’m sure it won’t be too difficult to entice readers. And according to various media reports, Lionsgate has already shown interest in bringing the new novel to the big screen.
This novel will definitely be added to the top of my reading list, but what about you? Are you excited about the new prequel, or do you think the series should have ended with the trilogy? Email me your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holly Viers is a general assignment reporter for the Kingsport Times News.