I want you to read Hunger Games. But after you’re done (come on, it only took you a day to read the whole series), go to the library or the used bookstore or Amazon.com and find something else. If you’re unsure of what to get, ask the salesperson or a friend or read the reviews. Yes, there are some bad books out there, but really, this is a low-risk investment.
I can’t promise you this book-that-wasn’t-made-into-a-movie will be below your reading level or that the characters will be one-dimensional and the plot convoluting and long just so more movies can be made. However, I can promise you that these stories will give you a new experience, a different perspective. And it will be an experience that the rest of the world isn’t having at the exact same moment.
What about the shared experience, you ask. Isn’t enjoying something together a good thing? Yes, and please share, discuss, read together. But also remember to depart from the hive mind occasionally. Take a second, look up, and see whether there might not be something more intriguing out there.