The Hunger Games Questions and Answers
by Suzanne Collins

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What happens in chapter 7-8 of The Hunger Games?

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In chapters 7 and 8, Katniss and Peeta begin their training for The Hunger Games.

Haymitch tries to determine if Peeta and Katniss have any special abilities that will help them in the games.  Peeta tells him that Katniss has skill with a bow and arrow, and Katniss tells him that Peeta has a lot of brute strength from carrying heavy flour sacks.

Peeta rolls his eyes at Haymitch.  “She has no idea.  The effect she can have.”  He runs his fingernails along the wood grain of the table, refusing to look at me (ch 7, p. 99)

During training, Katniss and Peeta are told to hide their skills until they perform for the gamemakers.  Katniss gets so frustrated when the gamemakers ignore her that she shoots an arrow directly at them.  It spears the apple in the hog’s mouth, and Katniss is given a high score: making her a target.

Katniss feels bad about what she did at the gamemakers.  She thinks that she will be punished, or her family will be punished, during the games.  She worries she has acted rashly, but Haymitch thinks she has spunk.

I can’t help comparing what I have with Gale to what I’m pretending to have with Peeta.  How I never question Gale’s motives while I do nothing but doubt the latter’s. (ch 8, p. 122)

Haymitch tells Katniss that Peeta has asked to be trained separately.  She is annoyed, because although she does not necessarily want to pretend she is in love with him, he is all she has.

These two chapters begin to unravel the relationship between Katniss and Peeta.  They develop more closeness, but Katniss feels as though she is betraying Gale.  She does not feel as comfortable with Peeta as she does with Gale, and she always wonders what Peeta is up to.  Besides the drama of the game, there is more drama yet to come in their personal relationship.

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