Brittany's Reviews > Mockingjay

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
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Feb 26, 12

bookshelves: collections, pop-culture, supernatural
Read in July, 2011

** spoiler alert ** This book differed greatly from the first two books of The Hunger Games Series (The Hunger Games and Catching Fire) in my opinion.

Instead of the heart that made the first two books so captivating, the tone in Mockingjay seems much more survivalist and strategic. Given the current status of the Panhem, I guess it's not really hard to understand but it was definitely a surprise for me.

Okay, here are my thoughts on Mockingjay, point by point.

1) Like I said, I found it to be lacking in heart a great majority of the time. It makes sense that Katniss is a little out of it and confused, but I still felt like a lot of time was wasted during her 'semi-comatose, don't really give a fuck' period. I would have preferred to be inside her head, really understanding why she was angry and confused and unsure of things instead of just seeing her act out or fall asleep in closets. That really took away a lot of the meaning for the book IMO.

2) It was quite confusing why she acted the way she did, as well as everyone else. I think the idea of double-crossing is definitely one that can provide intrigue in a story, however it can be overkill when you are constantly questioning everyone. And I did. I'm still not entirely sure about President Coin. I think she had her eyes on a specific prize, yes. But the whole bit about her being the one who killed Prim...I'm just not sure I buy it. It doesn't make sense to me personally. I think it would have made much more sense (and been more interesting to read) if Coin had been impeached or killed after proof had been found. I think the point was supposed to be that they had traded one dictator for another...but that seems like kind of a cop-out IMO. And also, I think if that was the image that Collins wanted to portray she should have had Katniss and Coin butt heads more. As it was, they seemed to dislike each other but not in the extreme need that Katniss had for Snow. It seems like Collins decided at the last minute to portray Coin and Snow as the same being without giving us the buildup or a clear reason why we should suddenly switch our alliances.

3) I found the final meeting between Snow & Katniss to be anti-climatic. It just didn't have any emotion behind it.

.4) I found Katniss' position in the Star Squad really pretty lame. I understand the point of it, and I totally get the idea that Katniss is more valuable as the face of the operation more than an actual player. However, I don't think that was fitting with Katniss' personality. For me, I liked it when she bucked that and actually kicked some ass. Like when they visited the hospital and she ended up shooting at the plans. That was awesome and fitting for the character that we've known for two books. I felt like she should have found a way to break away (especially if Gale & Boggs were around) and actually make a difference. The assassination plot could have been much more compelling if it had a) been less complicated by having a dozen people to take care of, and b) more of an actual plan involving battles with the Peacekeepers or anyone. After two books of Hunger Games where there's a constant battle, reading about Katniss & her squad hiding out in bunkers or disguising themselves to walk out on public streets is not interesting.

5) I did not like the way the triangle between Gale & Peeta was resolved. Honestly, I was fine with her ending up with Peeta. I could even see it. I love Gale personally and would choose him for myself, but I understand why Katniss is enhanced by Peeta. But I don't like the way the whole thing was concluded. I always saw Gale as a mirror of Katniss herself. He was very similar and like minded, and I felt they had a connection because of this. Even if they didn't end up together romantically, I felt that they were good enough friends that they should have at least had a conversation about it and remained a part of each others lives. Him just abandoning her for a job was complete and total CRAP in my opinion.

I don't think this was a bad book, necessarily. I just think it was not nearly as good as The Hunger Games, which was excellent. The whole appeal for me was the heart, the character of Katniss, and that was greatly lost in this book. I did appreciate the rebellion, the way Gale was used more in this book, and several other aspects. But it didn't live up to it's predecessors. I feel like Collins was just trying to pump this out before people forgot about her series. All of the big points were there, but they weren't portrayed strongly or clearly. I think this may be one of the rare chances where the movie may be better than the book, because this seemed written for that purpose more than for a good reading.
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