Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena live, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge....
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©2010 Suzanne Collins (P)2010 Scholastic Audio
"At its best the trilogy channels the political passion of 1984, the memorable violence of A Clockwork Orange, the imaginative ambience of The Chronicles of Narnia and the detailed inventiveness of Harry Potter." (New York Times Book Review)
"Unfolding in Collins' engaging, intelligent prose and assembled into chapters that end with didn't-see-that-coming cliffhangers, this finale is every bit the pressure cooker of its forebears. [Mockingjay] is nearly as shocking, and certainly every bit as original and thought provoking, as The Hunger Games. Wow." (Los Angeles Times)
"Fans will be happy to hear that Mockingjay is every bit as complex and imaginative as Hunger Games and Catching Fire." (Entertainment Weekly)
After reading some of the other reviews I was not sure how much I would like this last book. However I knew I had to read it so I would know how the story ended. I am so glad I put the opinion of others aside and read with an open mind to decide for myself if it was a worthy read.
I don't think the book could have ended any other way. This is not a story about sunshine and roses (no pun intended). It is about children forced to pay for the sins of their ancestors. The whole subject of the series is dark and disturbing and if you go into it knowing it is not going to be a feel good story your appreciation of the ending is greatly enhanced.
Katniss is not a super hero she is a teenager who has been physically, emotionally, and mentally abused. She has been put upon a pedestal against her will and expected to know all the answers, when in fact she is just a child trying to make her way in a harsh cruel world.
I like the fact that she doesn't have all the answers, that she breaks down and not always does what is expected. This makes her a much more believable character, much more human. If you pay attention to the personalities of the characters in the story they are all flawed, so it would not fit if she always knew and did the right thing.
This is a story about real people with all their faults, not super heroes, which is what makes the story a much better read.
The story line is dark and tragic and if you are not able to read about bad things happening to children this is not the series you want to read. It is not a feel good story, but it is very thought provoking. It will make you have second thoughts about the state of our world as we know it today.
We live in the information age, yet the biggest challenge facing humanity is communication. - Self.
Ah... I think after the strong ending in "catching fire" that mockingjay might become more action oriented.
What I didn't bargain on was the book becoming so dark and for so long. I guess Hunger Games and Catching Fire had element of colourful naive adventure in them. Mockingjay is not colourless but dark, confronting and causes a ruckus of emotion in the listener.
I can understand people not liking the book - because it isn't what they had signed up for. They had signed up for light YA games. This is the mature adult reality of life. Suzanne Collins causes the readers to grow up to these issues quite quickly. They need to realise that the book is still beautifully written and narrated. There is still a story and a message.
I think the ending gives closure but not the warm pleasant feeling of a happy ending. Everyone must wish that certain bloody events didn't occur.
Definite worth listening but be warned - don't expect everyone to come unscathed and DO keep tissues handy.
My first reaction to the conclusion was that the book lacked a certain sense of triumph. I wanted good things to happen to characters who I'd come to love. However, I have listened to the book twice, read it once and re-read the last few chapters a number of times. I think Collins point was to make the book as war-like as possible. There is loss. There are many, many things that the survivors will never recover from, yet they live. I thought Collins conveyed the sacrifice of change very well. I haven't been able to stop thinking about it.
"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one." - Jojen Reed. #ADanceWithDragons
As to be expected whenever a book that you have grown to enjoy comes to an end, you get a bitter sweet feeling. It gets worse when the book ends in a way that you don't really perceive it...
The book was narrated well enough; I think it was done far better in this book more due to the fact that the mental state of the characters in this book suited the narrator's strong area. The narrator does tortured/confused very well... you'll get what I mean when/if you listen to the book.
The book was bitter-sweet at the best. I feel sorry for how scarred and broken most of the characters ended up IMHO and the end of the book seemed somewhat rushed to me. It was good... but not great, definitely not up to the standard of the previous 2 books, but it was good enough. Not horrible to the point where it is unreadable of course, just bitter-sweet overall...
Say something about yourself!
This trilogy has to be one of my favorite book series, and this book is a fantastic end to a fantastic trilogy, with a twisted ending. As with all the books it is a quick read, and I think the target audience really is for both adults and teens, but not any younger.
The characters all have major faults and change throughout the book in what I would call a realistic way. One major point to remember is that Katniss is NOT the heroine of the story, but rather a pawn of politics, if you are expecting her to be the great hero in the story you will be sadly disappointed. This book has a different feel than the two other books which are based around the actual Hunger Games, this one's setting is the battlefield between the Districts and the Capitol. This book is very much a tragedy and does not have the type of happy ending ending I was hoping for, although it does tie up the loose ends and I think tried to make the best of the situation and had a very natural and realistic end.
I was completely in love after reading Hunger Games. I anxiously waited for Catching Fire and likewise counted the months, then days for the release of Mockingjay. I finished the book, and was just sitting, staring. My husband asked me if I was okay. I wasn't sure. The book was jarring and left me depressed.
The author is a wonderful writer and narrator was great, but the story was grossly disappointing. It always seems that the last chapter of trilogy books are a fast forward, tying up loose ends but there is no depth, just a few words of resolution for the reader. Mockingjay feel into that trap. I adored the first, less so the second because of its abrupt ending, but I was very disappointed in the final installment.
I found this to be a wonderful ending to this epic trilogy. It went on so many twists and turns that I had no idea where it would end up. I would guess what would happen next, and though I was right, the book would amp up what just happened to levels I wasn't expecting. It is quite violent, but that's the nature of the series, and I applaud it for being so gritty. All in all, this is a series that should be read. Dark? Yes, but also quite moving.
As for the narration, I found it to be excellent. Carolyn McCormick did an excellent job of mixing up her voice for the various characters without being silly. Some of the voices, basically those of Capitol characters, might have seemed a bit silly, but that actually fit the characters best. All in all, she did a superb job!
I have read many poor reviews for this final book in the Mockingjay series - to the extent I almost did not read it. Thank goodness I decided to put those aside and form my own opinions. I don't leave this series full of disappointment , frustration or angst. I depart feeling saddened but encouraged - knowing a long due resolution and sense of completeness and hope was provided to the much abused characters.
I was worried I would regret investing in the main characters, but the opposite is true. The author provided both a compelling storyline and a fulfilling resolution to the many difficulties faced throughout this series.
As to those who lament the darkness of the story, the destruction of life, or the poor development of characters - I say they must be idealistically naive souls who have yet to face the realities of this life. There was no indescriminate destruction of life, but a sorrowful depiction of what so often occurs during those horrible situations so commonly arising during war. As to character development, how would you imagine a teenager thrown into horror movie scenarios in an attempt to protect her little sister's life, only to lose so much to the very people she thought were on her side in the end would be affected? To have all illusions shattered at such a critical and tumultuous age would be mind-numbing and life altering at best. Most people would never recover to the point they could live normal lives following such torturous abuse. These strong characters manage to give others hope by not only surviving, but in choosing to LIVE. If you were to lose all that mattered most to you, be physically tortured and mentally attacked brutally and repeatedly, would you be strong enough to face your fears and choose to continue? To be part of a new and hopefully better world? I commend the author for her depth of commitment to an honest depiction and her strength imbued to characters enabling them to embrace the hope needed to survive.
I found the first two books of the series to be enjoyable and thought-provoking. Any first book of a series is full of discovery and often the most eye-opening as was The Hunger Games. The second book can sometimes be a sophomore slump, but I thought Catching Fire was as entertaining and moving as the first.
I anticipated Mockingjay would hold the same kind of discovery and adventure. Instead, I found the plot to be haphazard and confusing. I was left with questions throughout the book. I expected many to be answered by the book's end, but as the time wound down I became frustrated knowing that some of my questions would not have answers.
The dark edge of the book did not bother me and I enjoyed Carolyn McCormick's narration. She has become a character of the audiobook series.
With all that said, if you are a fan of the book, you will undoubtedly have to listen to this book, too. While I am disappointed in some of the aspects of the book, I do not regret listening to it.
Katniss Everdean is a hero. I love this character. She is a survivor, but she survived with class. She kept her humanity intact in a crazy world. I am wondering how I would do under the same circumstances.
I read Elie Weisel's must-read autobiography, "Night", just after I finished "Mockingjay". Weisel was a jewish teenager when he was taken by the Germans to Auschwitz. He doesn't know why he survived to tell the tale, but he did. The comparison of these two stories hit me hard, and I didn't know which was worse, the true story or the fiction. I think, as bad as Katniss had it, Elie Weisel had it worse. How can we treat other human beings so badly? It is way, way out of my ken, and yet, our society is edging closer and closer to that sort of thing every minute of every day.
The Hunger Games trilogy is a warning to us to hold on to what we have, and most especially, hold on to our humanity.
As always, Carolyn McCormick is an outstanding narrator.
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