Book Three: Mockingjay

I finished reading The Hunger Games Trilogy! Like the first two books, I read Mockingjay in one day. That evening, I settled on the living room couch to finish up the last bit. My family came in to watch a movie. I asked them to wait for seven more pages and they reluctantly agreed.

Seven pages later, I snapped the book closed, gave a little squeal, and rolled off the couch. When I recovered, my sister asked if the book was good. I sat up. “Good,” I said.“Traumatizing, but good.”

Instead of putting a movie in, my sister went to my room and pulled the first book off of my shelf. By now, she’s already on the second book. Huzzah!

Mockingjay has similar build and intensity as The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, but the different circumstances lead to very different intensity. After following the main characters through two books, one somehow gets attached, even though they have killed some-odd amount of people and need serious counseling.

Remember when I complained about Suzanne Collins’ use of present tense?

I still don’t prefer present tense in novels, but I have changed my mind about it in The Hunger Games. The entire attitude of the story is shaped by this grammatical decision. The narrator, Katniss, is wary and calculating. The narration echoes this by being precise, driven, and sometimes startling.

I like how Katniss decides to trust people. Rather than following political alliances, she judges character. She considers: Can this person laugh, feel, and care? What has this person experienced in the past? She looks for honesty in a place where secrets and hidden agendas thrive. And somehow, she finds it.

One observation that my sister made is that the plot is driven by the arts. The cause is furthered through television, precise clothing choice, and makeup. People find sanity in things like frosting a cake and growing a garden. I won’t expound on this, since I don’t know who has read it and who hasn’t. But it’s a really interesting idea that I would love to explore further.

Over all, one question remains. Now that I’ve read the books, will they stand a second reading? My copies will get plenty of use either way. My sister is reading them now, and a friend asked if she could borrow them. But in a year or two, I’ll take The Hunger Games Trilogy off the shelf again to see how it has aged.

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