Wednesday, September 29, 2010

MOCKINGJAY by Suzanne Collins

The Final Book in THE HUNGER GAMES
Publisher: Scholastic Books
Date published: August 2010
ISBN: 978-0-439-02351-1
YA Fantasy Thriller/Suspense
Reviewed by Dawn
Obtained by Library Copy

Katniss Everdeen has survived the hunger games twice now and has become part of a rebellion she had no idea existed. The capital is planning to stop the rebellion, squash it till everyone is dead. It’s up to Katniss to figure out how to defeat President Snow and keep her family and friends safe. Will Katniss become the rebellion’s mocking jay and be the face for a rebellion that has already cost her so much?

I have to admit, the first two books were phenomenal. I couldn’t put them down and frankly, they were so enthralling; it was very hard to put down. MOCKINGJAY is no exception except for a small issue-the characters. Ms. Collins delivers a story with many of the familiar faces found in THE HUNGER GAMES and CHASING FIRE yet there was something missing in the final installment that would lead me to read it over again. The returning characters were either very forceful, growing up and evolving or so wimpy, it was amazing they didn’t lie down and die just for the heck of it. The character, Katniss Everdeen was so strong and proactive in the first two books that I was eager to see her final adventure against the capital.

In MOCKINGJAY, she turns to mush. Instead of the capital manipulating and using her it is district 13. Instead of turning around and telling district 13 how she will participate in the rebellion, she lets them use her, which was a turn off to me. I loved how this main character was strong, tough and able to keep herself alive with her friends and potential romantic men (Gales and Peetra). It was utterly lost within pages after pages of war and death. I just couldn’t get into the way the Katniss was reacting to the chaos around her instead of being proactive. The romantic element of Katniss being torn between Peetra and Gales was not addressed till the very end and in a manner that felt like it was an afterthought. The writing was great-tight, fast paced and I really couldn’t put it down. It was the characters that did it in for me by the time I was done with the book.

Ms. Collins delivers a story that will leave you either satisfied or numb. I think I would have enjoyed the story more if there was a more human element to it. Yes, war is awful, deaths occur but Katniss never evolves, grows or matures in MOCKINGJAY and that was a disappointment. I think Ms. Collins misses the mark with her final book and though it is not as strong as THE HUNCER GAMES or CATCHING FIRE, I would re-read it again if I read the first books over again.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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