Book 4 was a very quick read, and much more enjoyable than I anticipated. I received The Hunger Games from my sister in law this Christmas. I put it on the shelf, thinking maybe I would read it after I finished a bunch of other things on my list. I grabbed it to take on a work trip a couple of weeks ago, because it was the only book in the immediate vicinity that would fit in my carry-on. I never started it on that trip, as I was still finishing The Gathering Storm. I had become intrigued, however, by the movie trailer, and bumped The Hunger Games up on my to-read list.
I started it this past weekend, and was soon hooked. I brought the book to work with me today, and finished it during my lunch break. I'm going to Target tonight to get the next two in the series. I wish some of the characters had been a bit more fleshed out (e.g. Cinna, other stylists). I'm also not convinced of the ability to have a new arena for every game, especially if each game is held in the vicinity of the capital. The sheer size alone makes that a bit absurd. So Katniss spends most of the first day running. Assuming the tributes were released near the center of the arena, and she ran more or less in the same direction, she has to have gone at least 10 miles. I am a slow runner, and can do 9 miles in under 2 hours. Someone having all day to run, even with rougher terrain, should certainly be able to cover 10 miles. So let's further assume that she made it to near the edge of the arena, although I recall nothing in the book that would indicate that was the case. If the arena is a rough circle, and the radius is 10 miles, that puts the area of the arena at just over 300 square miles. If all of the arenas are the same size, and all were maintained as tourist destinations, after 74 games, the arenas themselves would take a land mass about 1/4 the size of Colorado.
I don't mind suspending disbelief for magic in fantasy novels, or advanced technology for books like this, but the logistics should still make sense, darn it!