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Wow I haven’t had chance to do any blogs for ages. So I thought I’d get back into the habit with Battle Royale – a tale of  42 students abandoned on an island with only one brief – to kill each other until only one is left alive.

I always thought The Hunger Games was quite a good story until I read this one. Battle Royale takes place in a fictional police state version of Japan known as the Republic of Greater East Asia. From time to time, fifty randomly selected classes of secondary school students are forced to take arms against one another until only one student in each class remains.

I liked that unlike The Hunger Games there’s no love story running through it. It’s a brutal story about survival and there’s no time for the teenagers to be falling in love although I did smile that on occasion in breaks between shooting, stabbing and maiming each other several students would take the time to chat about who they each fancy. Can’t keep those teenage hormones down no matter what I guess.

This book caused me a bit of a problem. I don;t normally skip to the end to read the last page but out of curiosity this time I went to the back to see who if anyone would be left on the last page. That was a mistake as there’s a bit of a twist about 30 pages from the end which doesn’t tie up with the last page and then gets you thinking. I also found myself skipping to the end of each chapter seeing as there was a count of how many school kids were left alive. I found that I’d read a few lines to see who the chapter was about and then skip to the end of it to see if the number went down. I didn’t mind spoiling it that way as you know they’re gonna die at some point. It’s th fun in finding out how that’s more enjoyable.

The downside I think is working out the different ways of dying as there seems to be a large amount of different guns but then I suppose these are 15 year old kids not Rambo – the majority of them haven’t spent much time pondering the many ways to kill their classmates (although I liked the fact a couple of them had!)

The language seemed a bit basic but that may be down to reading a translation

Overall I loved this book. I found it hard to put down and couldn’t wait to see just what happened next