If I were to describe The Hunger Games in a paragraph, I'd clip this little one from the book and use it:
"And there I am, blushing and confused, made beautiful by Cinna's hands, desirable by Peeta's confession, tragic by circumstance, and by all accounts, unforgettable."
Katniss could so easily be a marysue. And again, it's impossible that she should ever be one. You see, she actually is all that the other characters think she is. We know this not because they tell us so, but because we see her act in character again and again. We see the way she shapes the world around her simply by being who she is. By doing the right thing. By fighting and scrapping and loving, fiercely.
And we see how she shapes the world around her because of the way the people around her use her. She's the perfect figurehead for the rebellion you can sense brewing all through this first book in the trilogy. And she is utterly oblivious to it because she's Katniss. She's just trying to survive, trying to save the lives of the people she loves.
I could go on and on about this book--I loved it, can you tell?--but I think the most important thing that I can say about it is that despite its flaws--and stylistically I thought there was a tiny flaw or two--it sinks its teeth into you and never lets go. If you're like me, you soared through this book, heart pounding, eyes glowing, tears gathering, and breathless with the rush.
This is why I became a writer. To be able to do this to people.