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The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Analyzing the Pros and Cons of Prequels

Suzanne Collins’ newest book, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, a prequel to The Hunger Games trilogy, is set to release May 19th, 2020. This prompts the question: What benefits do prequels provide for a story? The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes supposedly takes place in Panem 64 years before the original trilogy. By backtracking, not only do audiences lose favorite and well known characters, but any world-building that existed needs to be restructured and changed. On the other hand, it does provide significant details to the history, as well as the opportunity to flesh out backstories. Collins isn’t the only author to do this; J. K. Rowling wrote the Harry Potter series, and then Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, going back 70 years in her timeline. So, analyze the potential benefits and possible drawbacks to prequels for beloved novel series.

  • I think this is a great topic for modern books and films, which have seemed to embrace the prequel. – Sean Gadus 6 months ago
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  • Good topic! I'm very into well-drawn characters, so I'd say it depends on how strong your characters are and how relatable their journeys are. I haven't read The Hunger Games yet, but for an example, I can tell you Newt Scamander is a great protagonist. Also, he's one of those rare characters who manages to be a cinnamon roll without being insufferable. – Stephanie M. 4 months ago
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  • Just read the Ballad of the Snake and The Songbird and I absolutely loved it. Tracing the history of the hunger games was intriguing and it was great delving into the experience of being part of the Capitol during and after the war! – Sean Gadus 4 months ago
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