Barnes and Noble’s young adult book club has selected one of the most anticipated books of the year as its new read.
Suzanne Collins’ The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, a prequel to her wildly popular Hunger Games series, is the new pick for the Barnes and Noble YA Book Club, the retailer announced in a news release.
“You would have to live under a stone to have missed the triumphant storytelling of the original Hunger Games trilogy,” Barnes and Noble CEO James Daunt said. “Suzanne Collins has given us now the prequel, a publishing event of a magnitude and excitement that really only a new Harry Potter could rival.”
Barnes and Noble YA Book Club events are usually held in the chain’s 627 stores, but since they’ve all been shuttered because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the discussions of Collins’ book will be virtual. Readers are encouraged to discuss the book on social media using the hashtag #BNYABookClub in advance of an online discussion on Instagram scheduled for May 29.
Daunt said the book’s release was likely to be a boon for bookstores, thanks to the popularity of Collins’ books.
“Most of our bookstores offer curbside pickup and we are certain to have long, appropriately distanced queues on publication day, and record online orders,” he said. “This publication could not come at a better time for booksellers.”
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is scheduled for publication on May 19.
Michael Schaub is a Texas-based journalist and regular contributor to NPR.