So...I was skeptical about The Hunger Games. Nonetheless, I began Surprisingly, I really enjoyed them and look forward to seeing the movie. (I think it's awesome that Lenny Kravitz is playing Cinna!). And, true to young adult literature, the Hunger Games portrays good and evil in very black and white terms. The ruling government oppresses the people and will do nearly anything to retain their all-consuming power. It's reminiscent of other futuristic books we've seen like Animal Farm and 1984.
Katniss is the "hero" that comes to lead the way in the revolution. Now, I've only just started Book 3 so I'm not sure what ultimately happens. However, I really like the unforeseen twists in the storyline and the way the author never allows the reader to be "right" about what's happening exactly. Additionally, the horror of what the Hunger Games actually is is so grotesque that you can't help but want to see how the characters handle it.
All in all, I like the books and won't cast them aside into Twilight/Harry Potter territory (sorry fans!) but I still struggle with getting completely enveloped because some of the simple reasoning and language in the book. It reminded a lot of "The Giver" -- a book I truly loved as a child -- and I would totally recommend both of these to any middle schooler. We'll see if the movie lives up to the hype!