May the odds be ever in your favor, reader! Scholastic just announced the title and cover for the Hunger Games prequel. The book will be called The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, and will feature a bird motif, as the previous covers have. What significance it will play in the story itself is still unknown.

As previously reported, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is set 64 years before The Hunger Games, and will likely look at how the government in the novels formed as well as how the concept of the titular games was developed as a punishment for rebellion.

“With this book, I wanted to explore the state of nature, who we are, and what we perceive is required for our survival,” author Suzanne Collins said in a statement to The Associated Press. “The reconstruction period 10 years after the war, commonly referred to as the Dark Days — as the country of Panem struggles back to its feet — provides fertile ground for characters to grapple with these questions and thereby define their views of humanity.”


“Suzanne Collins is an expert storyteller and world-builder, and in revisiting the world of Panem, she again raises important questions about authority, the use of violence, and the truth of human nature,” said Ellie Berger, President, Scholastic Trade, in a press release.

“This cover does an extraordinary job of capturing the conflict—both inner and outer—that lies at the heart of The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” said David Levithan, VP, Publisher, and Editorial Director for Scholastic in the same release. “The mockingjay has returned, but at a new angle . . . which is very much in line with the story that Suzanne Collins is telling.”

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes will be available from all major book sellers on May 19, 2020, and pre-orders will be available.

About The Author

Sara Roncero-Menendez

A reporter by trade, Sara is a lover of horror, sci-fi, and all things pop culture. From indies to classics to even the strangest schlock, all movies and TV shows are fair game. She believes Batman is the most fascinating superhero, and that Silent Hill is one of the best horror franchises ever made (as long as you don't count the movies). Fun Fact: The only movie Sara will not rewatch is The Room -- once was more than enough.