After the constant action of The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, all leading towards the glorious rebellion, Mockingjay was a sh...more**spoiler alert** Wow.
After the constant action of The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, all leading towards the glorious rebellion, Mockingjay was a shock. Katniss spends the bookin a state of PTSD, and so do all the other victors, to some extent or another. And as the book goes on, it wears on you. The tension is always there, but the thrill of the last two books is gone; the closer the rebels come to their goal, the more apparent it is that everything isn't magically going to be okay at the end. The victors will be forever scarred from what they've gone through. The rebels aren't automatically good and kind leaders by virtue of rising against an evil one. And it's really the perfect ending to the trilogy. The first two books, we were cheering Katniss and Peeta on at the games just like viewers at the Capitol were--sure, we ate up the anti-Capitol sentiment, but we were expecting Katniss and her allies to rise up against an unjust rule, fight an exciting battle, and triumph over evil. In the third book, we see firsthand how damaged these action heroes were from their experiences, how they can't just snap back to photogenically finish off the bad guy. And when the rebels do triumph, and Katniss takes out Panem's new worst enemy, it isn't a triumphant moment. It's confusing. It means something, but it's empty. Things are better for Panem (for now), and Katniss and Peta and Haymitch will never be the same--but they'll get by. They'll make themselves a new life among the ashes of the old, and they'll live.(less)
There are some books where saying "Oh, I'll just read for half an hour before bed" leads to your staying up all night finishing it because you absolut...moreThere are some books where saying "Oh, I'll just read for half an hour before bed" leads to your staying up all night finishing it because you absolutely have to know what happens right now. Catching Fire is one of them. I enjoyed this one even more than The Hunger Games, and it's vying with Mockingjay for my favorite of the trilogy; they're hard to compare because Catching Fire feels like a ramped-up continuation of The Hunger Games, while Mockingjay is a different feel entirely. But enough about other books!
(view spoiler)[Catching Fire builds on the tension of The Hunger Games spectacularly well; the anti-Capitol sentiment is becoming more and more blatant, and the Capitol is determined to break Katniss before she inspires a full-on revolution. The fact that this is at the forefront makes what could have been a simple retread of the first book feel much different. The Games manage to be even more tense, even though Katniss and Peeta have allies and have an idea of what's coming this time--because there's more at stake than just their lives. Even with all the action and tension, though, there's a good deal of humor in the book (most of it black humor, admittedly). The new set of tributes is fantastic and full of character--which makes it even more painful to watch them die.
The one complaint I have is that Collins rushes through some sections to a ridiculous degree. It happens even more in Mockingjay, but it makes sense there due to reasons I won't get into--here, the rush through the Victory Tour was disappointing. Of course, the action that took up the second half of the book made up for it, but I would've liked spending a little more time on the tour. I've seen people speculate that Collins was pressured to keep the size of the books down; considering how all the books are almost exactly the same size as the (non-rushed) original, I'm inclined to agree. Besides that one complaint, I adored this book! (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Amazing, action-filled book. After tearing through the entire trilogy, it's hard to think of this book on its own; I love how Catching Fire and Mockin...moreAmazing, action-filled book. After tearing through the entire trilogy, it's hard to think of this book on its own; I love how Catching Fire and Mockingjay built on this so much, it's hard to consider the original on its own. Suffice it to say it's a great, action-filled book; the horror of the Games is never forgotten to pander to the reader's bloodlust. (view spoiler)[Cato's death is the perfect example of this--after the reader has been rooting for Katniss to kill the dangerous, completely unsympathetic villain to save herself and Peeta and win the games, his death is in no way a triumph. (hide spoiler)] One of the things I love about the trilogy is the gender role reversal in Katniss and Peeta: Katniss is the emotionally-stunted, athletic hunter, and Peeta is the kind, romantic baker. Katniss makes an excellently flawed heroine, and the other characters also have excellent, three-dimensional characterization. Team Haymitch all the way!(less)
While I usually adore dystopias, Uglies didn't really do much for me. Most of this attitude was due to the protagonist; I found Tally irritating and d...moreWhile I usually adore dystopias, Uglies didn't really do much for me. Most of this attitude was due to the protagonist; I found Tally irritating and didn't really understand why she was portrayed as so special when Shay was just like her, but much more interesting and likable. David, likewise, was surprisingly bland for an outsider and love interest with so much potential to be intriguing. I was also disappointed with the big revelation about the Pretties--it was obvious from the start to me, and I'm not one who usually figures out plot points in advance! It may be due to my familiarity with dystopian fiction, particularly young adult, but I've definitely read YA dystopias that have surprised me before.
I was definitely interested by the ending, once (view spoiler)[Tally must deal with the consequences of her actions and volunteers to go very deep undercover, so to speak (hide spoiler)]. I was also interested in learning how the world became what it was. The reasons for making Pretties (view spoiler)[avoided making the government mustache-twirling villains, but instead built off of fixing the flaws of today. (hide spoiler)] I don't think I'm interested enough to continue reading the series, though--if I liked Tally and David more, I would want to see what happens.["br"]>["br"]>(less)