Tuesday, September 7, 2010

READING : Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Publication date: August 24th, 2010
Published by: Scholastic Press
Source: Bought
Rating: 4/5
Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena alive, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. Who do they think should pay for the unrest? Katniss. And what's worse, President Snow has made it clear that no one else is safe either. Not Katniss's family, not her friends, not the people of District 12. 

What is there to say about the,without a doubt, most anticipated book of the year? Well, A LOT, and I won't be holding back so brace yourselves!

Let me begin by saying that overall, the Hunger Games books are brilliantly written.Come to think of it, brilliant doesn't even cut it.So, I had no doubt in my mind that MockingJay would not fail me in that department, and of course it didn't.This can in no way be described as a "bad" book, even if you don't like the story behind it, which granted, it may not be very unique(I remember making a few comparisons to Battle Royale myself, when reading The Hunger Games)but in the end it manages to touch and affect even the most sceptical ones.In MockingJay in particular, I loved everything that had to do with the story development, the whole idea of revolution, the two sides-Rebels and Capitol- the corruption of power and the notion that love may eventually heal some wounds, but is it enough?I was weirdly drawn to the possibility that that right there could very easily be our future or even our present, if some people don't start changing their mentality real quick.It was so brutal and realistic that I personally, felt awful just lying there on my bed doing nothing about it, not making a stand.It made me think really hard about who I am and what my life is or will be and where I stand in the grand scheme of things.It was a huge eye opener for me and hopefully for other people as well. So let us be clear about something: in my humble opinion, the Hunger Games series is one of the best, if not the best, series of YA books I have read and quite possibly, the best YA books out there.

From this point forward many SPOILERS have been added, which unfortunately I found unavoidable.So if you haven't read the book, please don't read any further.Consider yourselves warned!!

That being said, I have my objections about MockingJay.First of all, I found that it was slow at some points and this is not very good for an allegedly action-packed book, a book that describes a revolution, a war.At some point there were so many names going around,mostly of Rebels, that they all started bleeding into each other, thus making it very difficult for me to relate to these characters or even feel sorry for them when they died, because I had a  hard time placing them!
But what frustrated me the most and I really struggled with, was Katniss.I had no problem whatsoever with her in HG and CF, but in MockingJay she just really exhausted me!She didn't convince me once that she was the face of the Revolution, the infamous MockingJay. A suit and a golden pin doesn't make a true hero, in my opinion. Being harsh, mean and selfish doesn't make one, either.She cared deeply for her family, I give her that, but at times I think she only cared for them and no one else.If someone else and not Prim was out there when the bombing in 13 started, would she fight tooth and nail to keep the doors of their underground hideaway open so she could enter, even if it meant endangering all these other people?I don't think so.Yes, she went through a lot. Yes, she went in the Arena twice and that messed  with her head immensely.But so did Peeta.And boy, the hell he went through!I expected Katniss of all people to be compassionate and caring towards him, acknowledging what he did for all of them.But no!All she did was moan and complain and be angry at him for wanting to hurt her after the Capitol brainwashed him.But he knew who she was, he saw right through her and that angered her even more.That's why the ending was not the least bit satisfying for me!I mourned Prim's death, and the scenes where Katniss tried to find herself again after her sister's death were heart breaking.But her words in the last paragraph ruined it all for me.She completely wrote off Gale, who's character was completely destroyed in the end if you ask me, even though she was wondering who he was propably kissing over at 2, and practiacally saying that she didn't need Gale after all, and what she needed was the safety that Peeta provided her, even though she wouldn't hesitate to kill him a couple of chapters ago, him being a threat to the mission and all that.The way she said it felt like she settled for Peeta when what she wanted was Gale all along.That's what it felt like to me and after everything Peeta had done for Katniss and for everyone else, I found it so terrible, so degrading and honestly, it pissed the hell out of me!Gale's response to Peeta about who Katniss will pick in the end pretty much says it all: "Katniss will pick whoever she thinks she can't survive without".
It was the worst possible ending to an otherwise amazing book.

Thank you Suzanne Collins for creating the world of the Hunger Games and letting us have a glimpse of its greatness.It will forever be embedded in my mind and I will always be grateful to you for it.
You have my utmost respect!

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  1. I recently finished this and agree with all you said. The ending Gale situation was irritating as was so much else. I had no problem with the writing just were the story went. Great review!

    Teens Read & Write

  2. Thanks Alyssa!
    It's so frustrating when a series you came to love didn't have the ending it deserves!


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