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The Running Man

running man

Novel Description (From Amazon):

In the year 2025, the best men don’t run for President, they run for their lives….

Ben Richards is out of work and out of luck. His eighteen-month-old daughter is sick, and neither Ben nor his wife can afford to take her to a doctor. For a man with no cash and no hope from the poor side of town, there’s only one thing to do: become a contestant on one of the Network’s Games, shows where you can win more money than you’ve ever dreamed of—or die trying. Now, Ben’s going prime-time on the Network’s highest-rated viewer participation show. And he’s about to become prey for the masses…

Who are the main characters?

Ben Richards: Main protagonist. He is a husband and father who is down on his luck. He is willing to do anything for his wife and daughter who needs medical care. Seeing no way out, he decides to go on a game show that cares more about ratings then those who go on the show for a purpose. The show that he goes on is titled the Running Man, wherein, as the title says you have to run. The catch is you are literally running for your life. The longer you stay alive the longer you have in possibility to earn money.

Dan Killian: Main antagonist. The executive producer of the program who is all about giving the people what they want and describes the dangers that will happen as the show progresses.

Hunters: Main antagonist. They are elite men who are hired by the network who sponsors the games to hunt down the contestants and kill them, after they are declared enemies of the state.

List what you liked about the book

1. It is a dystopian novel. Well-written dystopian is always a joy to read because it exploits events that makes an individual consider their own actions in present time.

2. The story represents a man who loves his family and will do everything for them, including risking his life.

3. The craft of outwitting professional killers really demonstrates that a person can think strategically when the future of loved ones are on the line.

4. Ben Richards began the novel with his family’s future his main concern and even with the way the book ends his thoughts continue to be on his family as he makes decisions that change the course of lives.

Is there anything you didn’t like about the book?

There are parts of the book that are dry and pulls the reader through the story waiting for the action to pick up. Not a deal breaker in reading the entire book but something to mention.

Any plot twists?

I wouldn’t necessary call it a plot twist but it is near the end of the book (no spoiler) where we see how evil the network is you really start to feel for Ben Richards. It is this moment in the book where if you weren’t cheering for him for the duration of the book then you are at the end. You will even cheer on his final decision.

Overall Impression

This book is as far away from the movie adaptation of the same name. Originally I fell in love with the movie because the concept was great but it wasn’t until I read the book that I realized that the movie is as far away from the book as can be. The book really shows the plights of a father and husband who cares so deeply for his family that he will do whatever he can to ensure the livelihood of those he loves. Besides a few areas where the book drags, it keeps you on your toes if he can survive the duration of the games.

Would you recommend this book to others?

Yes, this is nice pace book that illustrates the length people will go for their loved ones.

Final Grade?

A-

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