I was delighted to see this post on Comparative Geeks today. My nerd-heart* skipped a few beats. Katniss Everdeen is one of my favorite female characters in young adult literature. I knew this from almost the moment I started reading about her.
One of my favorite moments in the entire Hunger Games trilogy happens on about the second page of the first book. Katniss, who we’ve just met, is stalking around outside her district, trying to hunt food without being caught. She is followed by a mountain lion, and she thinks of this creature as a friend for a while. But then the creature starts making too much noise, and she kills it. This is on the second page of the book. I remember the delighted feeling of knowing “this girl is a badass.” Not only has she sneaked out of her post-apocalyptic, decimated and heavily guarded home, she is hunting food for her mother and sister. With a bow. And then she makes friends with a big, scary cat. The she kills it. This is a girl that we do not often see the likes of in literature. She is flawed, but she is strong. She’s strong enough to be a little frightening, and we know this immediately.
I knew then that she’d be a character I’d love to love. And I do.
*Nerd-Heart: The core part of me that loves literary theory, science fiction, fantasy, over-analyzing, and all-things-nerd.