Entertaining read. I'm really glad I picked it for my teen book club. The non-stop action kept me and the teens turning the pages at a rapid rate. I w...moreEntertaining read. I'm really glad I picked it for my teen book club. The non-stop action kept me and the teens turning the pages at a rapid rate. I was relieved there was no dog dying and the characters were nicely fleshed out. The book does require a lot of suspension of reality, but is nonetheless enjoyable.(less)
I'm not typically into the alien sub-genre of science fiction. This one sounded interesting enough, though, so I decided to give it a shot. It was uni...moreI'm not typically into the alien sub-genre of science fiction. This one sounded interesting enough, though, so I decided to give it a shot. It was unique in that aspect. Miki is in a fatal accident and is "pulled" into an alternate reality where she is a warrior who fights an evil race of aliens - the drau - who are trying to take over the Earth. It's compared to a video game by other characters in the story. On her team are four other people, including the leader Jackson who is an insanely hot and mysterious bad boy. The romance is what really knocked this down to three stars. Generally, I like the romance in stories, usually it's my favorite part. But this was very Twilightesque. Jackson is dangerous and warns Miki she should stay away from him for her own good but at the same time he won't leave her alone. He stalks outside Miki's house watching her. Anytime Miki is in trouble, he's there to save her. Miki thinks he's a jerk but whenever she looks at him, she melts from his complete and total hotness. While usually I don't feel this way about trilogies, I have hopes that the second book will be better than this, the first one. There was a lot of world building and question asking and answering. While this book didn't knock my socks off, I'm invested enough to want to read the second when it's released. A good pick for girls who like romance with their sci-fi, and a decent one for readers who want action and adventure. (less)
Didn't care for the glimpse into Hana's personality. I felt it was completley opposite from how she was portrayed in Delirium. Annabel's story was so,...moreDidn't care for the glimpse into Hana's personality. I felt it was completley opposite from how she was portrayed in Delirium. Annabel's story was so, so. It was cool to learn more aboubt Lena's father, but I was bothered by how much more Annabel seemed to love Lena over Rachel. Raven's story was excellent, however I'm angry and disappointed that what is revealed about Raven in this novella is not so much as even hinted at in Requiem. Love this series, but these short stories just didn't do much for me.(less)
A really good second book in a trilogy. It did not have the drag that so many sequels seem to have when authors simply write a boring in-between novel...moreA really good second book in a trilogy. It did not have the drag that so many sequels seem to have when authors simply write a boring in-between novel that lacks the action and plot of the first and third books. An admirable heroine and a plot more central to action and mystery and less focused on romance makes both Legend and Prodigy stand apart. The alternating narratives also makes it easy to put into the hands of both boys and girls who can't get enough of the dystopia genre. (less)
When you dream about a book and can't stop thinking about it, you know it has touched you. Once again, beautiful, beautiful writing by Oliver and wond...moreWhen you dream about a book and can't stop thinking about it, you know it has touched you. Once again, beautiful, beautiful writing by Oliver and wonderful characters I care about. However, what makes this a four star and not a five star book is what I would call the Mockingjay Effect. Like the last book in the Hunger Games, there is a lot of dragging and an ending that didn't leave me completely satisfied. I've been dying for the release of this book, but after finishing it, I just feel a bit let down because I think there were so many possibilities that Oliver didn't explore. The ending ultimately felt rushed, especially considering the whole book was leading up to it. In some ways, I think Oliver made the end quite realistic, but I won't deny I wanted something a little more happily wrapped up. It doesn't change the fact that I love, love, love this series and I think Lauren Oliver is one of my favorite writers ever (her characters and descriptions - OMG!). I'll be thinking about this book, and the whole series, for a long time.(less)
**spoiler alert** Probably the most honest ending to any book I've ever read. It does not matter if your side wins in a war, you still lose so many of...more**spoiler alert** Probably the most honest ending to any book I've ever read. It does not matter if your side wins in a war, you still lose so many of the things you were fighting for. There is no skipping merrily into the sunset for Katniss and I think that is what makes this book so hearbreaking and yet so wonderful.
How do I feel after finishing this book? Drained. Depressed that so many people died, depressed that it's over. Much like the way I felt after finishing the last Harry Potter, although I will say for that there was at least that uplifting final scene when Nevil cuts off Nagini's head and everyone charges into battle. That scene that made you want to run right into the book and fight with them. There was none of that in Mockingjay. Instead Collins chose to write the true horrors of war - the pain, the fear, the lack of mercy, the fact that no one side is all good.
This was the chilling thing about Mockingjay: In the first two books, you sympathize only with the rebels and the Capitol is this evil place that has no heart. But then you see what District 13 did to Venia, Octavia, and Flavius. You see what they did at the Nut in District 2. You see that they murdered children at the Capitol, including Prim, that they elected to have their own Hunger Games. In the end, it is hard to point out a good side or at least a good leader. Why is it that people seem to do the same horrible things over and over again, even when they claim to be fighting against it? I was so happy when Katniss sent that arrow through Coin's heart.
As with my opinion of the first two, I thought it was extremely well-written, and again I can't stop thinking about it even though I finished it over a week ago. The deaths (particularly those of Finnick and Prim) were hard to deal with. I couldn't bear what happened to Peeta, although I had assumed before reading it he would come back tormented. However, any time he repeated something he had said before the hijacking, "Always," "I know what blood poisoning is, Katniss, even if my mother's not a healer," is what made my eyes water. Having a character die is painful, yes, but they died as themselves. Seeing someone changed because of the terrors inflicted on them is a different kind of heartbreaking.
At first I was put out that there was no "storming of the castle" if you will. I thought Katniss would charge into the mansion with the rebels at her side and kill Snow. However, now I see why that just wouldn't work for this book. It is not about the glory of winning; it never has been. It's about what you risk, what you stand to lose and the cost of losing it, even if what you're fighting for is right.
I gave this a 4 out of 5 rating for one main reason and that is what happened with Gale. Though I never wanted he and Katniss to end up together, the only majorly out of character thing in this book was the way they left things. I understand Katniss saying she'd never be able to separate Gale from Prim's death, but I also feel like they would have had more of a good-bye and that he would not have just allowed her to mosey on off to 12 after her trial and wallow in sadness in front of the fire. Wouldn't he at least have checked on her? After years spent together, I think that bond still would have existed. Maybe Gale just felt too guilty to face her, but in the end it just felt to me like he didn't care. I also became irritated with the constant drug-induced states although I understand their necessity in the novel - a lot of people who've seen awful things spend their lives in that sort of state of mind - but I simply got tired of trying to decipher what was going on.
I'm glad Katniss's ending with Peeta was subtle. It was enough, and would have broken away from the tone of the book if they had fallen into each other's arms with some declaration of love and a passionate kiss. The final "Real," was all that was needed.
So...overall, a wonderful book with a heavy message that does not exactly make you feel all warm inside, but that simply shows that losing people is inevitable, and that someday, life will go on. (less)