Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3) Mockingjay question

Did anyone else find themselves detesting Katniss Everdeen by the end of this series?
Emma Emma Sep 03, 2012 06:24AM
I found her increasingly more childish, irritating and selfish. I believe I was supposed to be irritated by her but I wonder if anyone else found her so dislikeable? I found myself quite angry that she got a fairly honest and happy life after her behaviour during the uprising.

I found her very human. She was not the kindest character nor the worst. I think her flaws and unlikability are used to serve a point. It would be easy to detest the Capitol if they were only punishing likeable angelic creatures like Prim. However, her failings allow us to see that what the Capitol does is wrong no matter who they do it to.
Much like the other victors even the horrible one's that were careers, still did not deserve to be treated the inhumane way that they were being treated.

Kenneth So true. I admired the careers for their discipline, skills and desire to win. They like everyone in the Games are victims and I loved how the author ...more
Jan 01, 2017 07:05PM

Same here. I actually didn't like her from the beginning to the end of this series.

So you take a teenage girl who knows primarily hunger/starvation, a mentally/emotionally absent mother, dead father and a cruel rule at the hands of the Capitol. She's running on pure survival - keep herself alive, keep her sister & mom alive. She lives with the fear and dread of these games all her life until the one person she knows she loves - her sister - is named for the games. On impulse, she sacrifices herself in her sister's stead, knowing she will likely die.

She sees how they are pawns in this game of death. The name of the game is once again survival. Whatever it takes - knowing however, you are likely to fail. You watch others die horrendously, kill a few yourself. You have to play to the audience to increase your chances of survival. Imagine surviving all the horrors, they mind-screw you thinking you can both get out, then they change their mind. You pull a "berry" stunt and manage to live. You've been traumatized but should be able to live out your days providing food for your starving family and district. Instead, you're a threat to the powers that be and your life is still on the line, along with the lives of those you love.

Next thing you know, you're being thrown back into the horrors you survived in round one and you're going to relive all that and more. You will likely die as you're now on the president's #1 hate hit list - good luck winning favors.

She's a teenager fighting just to survive. You're an emotion wreck and being manipulated at every turn. Who to date is hardly at the top of your to do list. How do you do a relationship when all you can think is "don't die, don't die." You form bonds and have feelings for people (Rue), kisses are but stolen moments of your "teen stage" but are you really going to be let out to go live a happy life? You're in survival mode. Dream all you want, but all you've known is hunger and the struggle to live. Even before the first games, she doesn't plan on kids or dream of happily ever after.

When in district 13, it turns out the "good guys" want to use her as a pawn in their game too. And she's just as disposable if she doesn't play her role there.
What a shake to your foundation of good and bad, right and wrong. How hopeless is that? What are you fighting for? Cling to something...

In Mockingjay, Like Peeta, I think she is having a hard time herself with "real or not real". And then by the time Prim dies, all that she suffered, endured, friends dead, love used against her, all the people she cared for pay a price, the torment and loss it too much. Her personal efforts seem to be for nothing and she is a shattered shell. It was a constant struggle through trauma and stress, all the way through. Everyone around her suffers then dies. She constantly sees it's because of her, somehow.

I did want her to validate Peeta's love better. To somehow be worthy of it and amply return it. I have to keep remembering - teenager, life bordered on starvation, thrown into trauma and intense manipulation and mind games and war, all she's believed in shaken to the core. It's hard to feel romantic and touchy-feely under those terms, so I give her a little grace on this.

My biggest complaints at the end: a bit more descriptive tenderness b/n Peeta & Katniss to leave me a bit less emotionally raw at the very end, a better summarization of Gale's choice/departure - so long being best friends surely something - but I guess the war has changed them both, Finnick's death was totally unnecessary and he was quickly discarded by the author, and what about the pearl? Ending was chopped too short and everyone disposed of.

I'm feeling a little traumatized myself after taking that journey with Katniss...

I didn't like Katniss Everdeen from Page 1 of The Hunger Games, & disliked her more through the series... But then again I don't like any of the female hero characters in any of the dystopian/sci-fi/supernatural books... The boys on the other hand are dreamy, strong, clever, solid as a rock, patient, heartthrobs... Maybe I'm just jealous...

I think people who found themselves disliking Katniss after "Mockingjay" were missing the point. She's a realistic, flawed character, not a cartoon superhero. Throughout the books, she came across as a girl who was sullen, neurotic, and naive, but also brave, ethical and witty. Sure you might have wanted to shake sense into her at times, but at others you wanted to hug her or high-five her.

It's this beautiful complexity that makes her so interesting, that makes you care about her and what happens to her.

try this experiment - make a list of what happens to our poor little Mockingjay. Start with being born into poverty, losing her father, go through having to support her crazy mother (by illegal means punishable by being avox-ed), having to go to the games twice, fight in a war, seeing her lovers both mistreated, seeing her sister die, being exploited by the very people she thought might save the world, losing her spleen - and I haven't listed everything.

Would anyone be happy-happy-joy-joy after a life like that. It's a wonder she managed to come out of her nervous breakdown at all. I love and admire her, and I don;t care who knows it :^)

Katniss might have changed. But it's normal, she's a human being. Not a robot. Suzanne's just being realistic as to how someone would act after undergoing those things. She didn't write Katniss as this tough girl throughout the series. Situations have changed her. Circumstances. Death. Happenings. It's normal.

She wants to present a realistic heroine. Not a superheroine. If you were to put on her shoe, I'm sure you'll be like her. Or maybe worse.

Katniss is not perfect. But she's real.

I thought I was the only one who tought like that. At first I loved Katniss, at the second book I was like *meh*, but in the third book! Wow! I couldn't stand her.

I didn't dislike her, I just think Mockingjay was to big for her POV. I mean this world changing war is going on, and where are we? Hiding in the closet as a unstable 18 year old. Uh...

Betty Cross Katniss lost all power of agency at the start of Mockingjay and didn't get it back until she killed Coin, and then only for a moment. Frankly, I liked ...more
Jan 23, 2017 02:26PM

Kristine (last edited Mar 08, 2014 03:46AM ) Mar 07, 2014 10:39PM   1 vote
Katniss doesn't have a high opinion of herself. The only thing she really takes pride in is her archery skills. Haymitch doesn't help by telling her she doesn't deserve Peeta -'you could live a thousand lifetimes and not deserve him.'

She idolises Peeta for his goodness and skill with words. But she's actually no slouch in either department. She does as many kind acts as Peeta does. And although she's not good at manipulating words as Peeta (ie lying), she's very effective when it's spontaneous.

Trouble is Katniss is doing the narrating and it's easy for the reader to have the same opinion of Katniss as Katniss does herself - and it's not high.

Katniss's indecisiveness when it comes to which boy is frustrating. But then this is a situation that Katniss didn't want. It was imposed on her. So why should she 'choose' before she's ready to? Plus, she's got a lot more pressing things to think about - her survival and the survival of her loved ones, whether to appease Snow or rebel against him.

She makes the ultimate sacrifice in the end - her own life to save Panem from another tyrant.

The girl is a hero. Give her a break.

YES! Totally. I liked her in the first, and she was okay in the second, but in the third she was totally crazy and had a completely different attitude than the first two books, which made absolutely no sense. I liked the ending of the series, but she was hard to like for the majority of Mockingjay.

Emma wrote: "I found her increasingly more childish, irritating and selfish. I believe I was supposed to be irritated by her but I wonder if anyone else found her so dislikeable? I found myself quite angry tha..."

I was pretty furious about the ending in mockinjay too. I mean, Peeta goes through hell for her, and only because she starts to feel bad and needs a "quick fix" so to speak she ends up with him. It was like she was doing him a favour! and I was very irritated by that. She was totally undecided the whole journey through. She is probably one of the most ...irksome reluctant heroes to date.

deleted member Jan 16, 2013 12:22AM   0 votes
it's like she turned into her mom
i'm all for realism but you shouldn't start a depressing book and end it depressingly
she's this sad, shell of a woman and she ended up with someone who I didn't believe was like "the one"

Was frustrated at times but I dont detest her. After all the trauma, she just wants to crawl under a rock and be left alone not have to be dragged on camera to make speeches. She was turned into a symbol. it was like she wasn't a person anymore. It goes back to what Peeta said in Book 1 that he doesnt want to lose who he is. Katniss was kinda losing herself to the cause, that she became a pawn and struggled maintaining her humanity.


Very agree. After she voted for new Hunger games for Capitol children, she TOTALLY LOST my (even at this point very little) sympathy. I loathe her for this.

She really got on my nerves too. It took her forever to fall for Peta even though he loved her enough to try and protect her and endangering his own life. She kept going back and forth between him and Gail and she was just selfish in general. When Peta had been made to think she was trying to kill him and he was terrified of her, she was not sensitive to him at all. He would have stood by her and helped her through it, but she just ignored him and hated him for how he treated her even though it wasn't his fault.

At first I did feel annoyed by Katniss. I didn't think she deserved all of the attention and affection from so many people she did not return. I thought she was a whiny Bella-ish character. But I thought more about it and really, she has been through so much. She had such a horrible tragedy of a life. Losing her father at such a young age, having to provide for a family, having to play in those horrible games and then with that not even being enough she had to go back again and then watch more people she cares about die before her very eyes. I forgive her for being a little bit of a whiner. I would probably be a miserable person to be around if that all had happened to me too.

I feel a bit late to the party, but I need to add my 2 cents.
I couldn't believe that Suzanne Collins took such an amazingly strong female character and turned her into such a blubbering mess in Mockingjay. It just frustrated me to see how she this strong female fighter basically spent most of this book in the psych ward. I get that she was traumatized, but her whole life up until this point was horrendous and she was still strong and admirable. Mockingjay turned her into a "victim" and really, for me, ruined Katniss.

deleted member Sep 20, 2012 02:13AM   0 votes
Yeah, she got a bit 'cold and calculating' for a while, but i think she came to her senses. She had a crap time and she acted crappy toward the people around her because of that. But she's only a human with a survival instinct, it's not like she's an Abnegation from Divergent! I find I can understand her decisions, not necessarily agree with all of them, but I can understand where she's coming from.

I was really annoyed by her by the middle of Mockingjay. I got even more annoyed by the end.

at the end yes like why would she have the future children compete in the games? She didn't even want to do it herself. And her children won't have to do it wich makes it more selfish.

I don't dislike Katniss. She was real. Obviously suffering from PTSD. I was disappointed with the sudden and abrupt way the final book ended, but then I thought about it.... If I had experienced this kind of hell, when it was over for me, I'd want it to be over, done, no reflection, no thinking, no nothing... that was Katniss at the end, that was how Collins wrote it. That kind of trauma never ends. You live with it everyday and Collins gave us that gift also.

I didn't detest her, but I did find her character's development very disappointing. While I understand that the psychological damage of the games was a truthful account of human character, I didn't like the fact that she descended into this ball of mess whose main concern was the affection of two male characters. It was giving me twilight crap which I HATE. In the first book she made it clear that the love triangle drama was something she wanted because she actually had to focus on trying not to die. For some reason this seems to have been forgotten in the 2nd and 3rd books because Collins decided to play the love triangle arc, and not very well I might add. I thought the ending was brilliant of course, typical of a dystopia series, no happy endings. Katniss could've been something greater.

Katniss is a normal person. We all have something people like and something people hate. I think she was just being human and Peeta made her more likeable than detestable

You are really stupid if you detest Katniss. She was just a human and a really brave one. I love her and she is my heroine.

The first time I did, but the second time I read it I didnt

she was such a little childish b**ch
i cant believe that she said yes for the capitols children hungergames
"for prim" she says
with her angel heart

Anyone who can claim Katniss is selfish by the end of the last book just has no idea what they're talking about. I just have a few questions for the OP and anyone who thinks that way: why was Katniss so horrified about the capitol Hunger Games and why did she decide to kill Coin instead of Snow?

To be honest, I found Katniss grating on my nerves. The things she said, the decisions she made... And yet, I think she is one of the most remarkable characters in YA fiction. The fact that she's not perfect is what I love the most about her, even though her personality I rather dislike. And I'm proud of Collins for daring to create a character who is flawed, who does make mistakes, and unlike a lot, feels the consequences for those mistakes. She's a fantastic character. The fact that she's not soppy and fragile and perfect only makes the story that much better.

deleted member Apr 26, 2013 01:26PM   0 votes
I hate Katniss. I can't identify with her at all.

I didn't detest her as much as ms Collins' seemingly rushing to end the book. A lot of things she did were very out of character.

Maybe it's because she reminds me so much of myself, but I absolutely LOVED Katniss the entire way through.

Having been to the edge of survival myself, I found her reactions and, yes, selfishness, completely understandable and warranted. When she reacts harshly to Peeta after his return from the Capitol I found myself annoyed with the other characters for not understanding her position. Peeta was the one obsessively in love with her-- she didn't know how she felt, and being in her head throughout the series, we knew that. She had a few other slightly more important things on her mind than the feelings of the boy who had just tried to strangle her with his bare hands. At the beginning of the first book Katniss wasn't even sure if she loved her MOTHER. Maybe I'm a bad person, but I'd be wary of anyone who I wasn't certain about in the first place after they tried to kill me.

And you're right. Katniss wasn't ready for everything her role as the Mockingjay meant for her to be. That's the point. Few people would be! A clear, real-life example would be the way authors/musicians have so much trouble making something new after their first HUGE success. Harper Lee springs to mind. Sara Gruen. Dan Brown. Maroon 5. *N Sync.

It's way too early for me to come up with like, actually respectable artists. I'm less erudite before noon.

Katniss is one of the best-written characters in modern literature. She's Scarlett O'Hara with better aim.But I love Scarlett, maybe I just like characters that are tough to swallow?

...I've been known to grate a few nerves...haha

The only person she loves most in the world, her sister Prim, gets called on reaping day. She sacrifices herself, even though she knows she will likely die in Prim's place. Of course she has mental flaws, I think we all would after what happened to her: a) Her sister gets reaped b) she is forced to go to a death match c) she has MULTIPLE close calls (almost taking her life) d) she watches a 12 year old die in her lap, and there is nothing she can do e) the love of her life does't love her f) she has to go BACK to the games a second time
g) her sister dies in front of her. Yes, Katniss is a flawed character, but aren't we all?

I liked her the first two books but the third one I didn't like her at maybe. I kinda felt like she was a whole different person. But maybe that was the point. Its reasonable that she changed because in reality she went through a lot and her character grew and changed with the story.

No Emma, I know a lot of people that don't like Katniss at the end of Mockingjay. Ms Collins really failed her character in that book. She decided her anti-war message was more important than her characters or the plot.

I also don't see how Collins could find reading a whiny, delusional mess of a book a good finale at all. Having them all die would've been better than ruining the characters for me.

Maybe I shouldn't speak up here as I'm only halfway through Catching Fire, but I just can't believe how annoying Katniss has become. It's like she's an entirely different person to the completely focused, strategically- thinking Katniss from Hunger Games. I remember I was in complete awe of her after the first book, and thought we finally had a female role model who was sharp and positively kicked-ass. Then in Catching Fire she began constantly analysing the boy situation, the emphasis placed on that aspect was wayyy too much for me - even the jealous remarks supposedly made by Gale and Peeta, one would have thought they had more pressing issues on their minds considering their environment. Plus Peeta slept in the same bed as her on the train and he didn't even get an awkward hard-on? I know this is a sci-fi novel but that's really pushing the genre's boundaries! And her indecisiveness as to which one she wanted was just so lame, "I don't know how I feel" - what are you, retarded? Well, anyway - just my 2 cents!

Like someone else said, I found her very human. She's not perfect and she never was. To me she was an emotional wreck for most of the book but that's what makes the book so good, it's believable. She isn't a robotic character. She makes mistakes and there were times in that book that I was annoyed by her actions of choices. The only point where I would say I "detested" her was when she voted to send the capitol kids into a hunger games. However when she killed Coin that pretty much canceled that out and then I liked her again.

Ashleigh (last edited Jan 15, 2013 04:20PM ) Jan 15, 2013 04:18PM   0 votes
I was never sure what to think of her. she was one of those characters who does things that I like but then turned around and did something I completely disagreed with. I can't think of a literary example right now but another fictional example is Richard and Emily Gilmore from Gilmore Girls - they did and said things that made me dislike them but then in the odd instance I found them sympathetic and at times felt sorry for them.

Edit. Sansa Stark in A Song of Ice and Fire. I am never sure what to think of her...there are times I hate her and times I just want to hug her, but overall I'm not entirely sure that she's a likeable character. I much prefer Bran and Arya.

Ariane (last edited Jan 16, 2013 12:21AM ) Jan 16, 2013 12:18AM   0 votes
Emma wrote: "I found her increasingly more childish, irritating and selfish. I believe I was supposed to be irritated by her but I wonder if anyone else found her so dislikeable? I found myself quite angry tha..."

Same here. I'm very irritated with her especially that part that she became soooo premadonna in district 13 despite the fact that district 13 housed all her people in their base. They woudnt survive in the woods if left alone.

I just find her cool for her strategies to stay alive and for saving Peeta. We also have to give Peeta the credit for saving Katniss.

The thing that happened for me--and I'm looking from a writer's perspective--is that in book 3 the author stopped building her characters. It was almost as if she thought, "Well, everybody already knows them, so I'll just concentrate on getting the plot down." None of the characters felt particularly satisfying to me in book three which was a letdown since I pre-purchased Mockingjay, something I rarely do. The last book could have been phenomenal with the introduction of District 13, but rather than building to a riveting crescendo, it fizzled. That being said, series books are a challenge. One book is inevitably weaker than the others, usually, however, it's book 2.

I have two parts: the before reread and the after reread.

Before reread, I hated her in all the books. I finished the books (didn't even bother to read the second..I just read the wikipedia summary) only because I wanted to know what happened to Peeta.

After re-read: I guess I'm the opposite. I somewhat detested her at first, was mildly annoyed in the second and quickly climbed just below Peeta on my most favorite character in the series list.

A lot of people here already listed why I love her but that is not to say that I don't understand why people disliked her because I've also been in the boat. But I guess the more that I thought about it, the more that I read critical comments against her, the more that I've tried to put myself in Katniss' shoes... the more I realize how complex and interesting she is. And it helps that I remember her as someone always human, prone to mistakes and headdesk worthy decisions but at the same time incredibly believable.

I found Her very dislikable by the end of the series, many of the other characters had gone through nearly the same and even more suffering than Katniss, yet they were still decent people.

Mrs. Everdeen was suffering from clinical depression. Just as Katniss had done in "Mockingjay". Neither of them were "crazy".

I like Katniss. She is not perfect. In fact, I believe that her lack of perfection is what makes her such an interesting character. I never understood this desire for fictional protagonists to be perfect or ideal.

I never liked Katniss. I mean, yes, she was very selfless in giving up herself to save her sister, but EVERYTHING else she does, it's like she has no idea what she's doing. She doesn't start a revolution, she's just going step by step, and I don't know. I don't see her as inspirational at all.

So many critics. She suffers from mental instability and your telling me she wasn't supposed to come out of everything shes been through un broken. She is a strong female lead. She struggles to see her worth something that would happen to anyone thrown to your death for survival. I guess some people won't be able to relate, the way she can look at herself so critically. The one person she loved with all of Her broken heart became a torch in front of Her eyes. She slowly felt herself slipping away knowing every step she was closer to a mental breakdown.

Emma wrote: "I found her increasingly more childish, irritating and selfish. I believe I was supposed to be irritated by her but I wonder if anyone else found her so dislikeable? I found myself quite angry tha..."

Was it a happy ending? I must have lost something in translation!

Yes, I didn't understand her way of behaving sometimes...but I always go back to all the things she has been through, how young she is, and kind of understand her. I'm sorry but I would be the same kind of crazy that she's in her situation.

The only thing that really bothers me is that going from Peeta to Gale and Peeta aaand Gale again. But i think that it's just a valid deficiency on her personality, her need to help the helpless, suffering ones or some kind of selfishness that leads her to USE those boys just to feel better herself.

I Loved Katniss in the first book. But for some reason by the middle of Mockingjay I didn't really care what happened to her. Sometimes I pretend the last book is one of her nightmares.

I wanted to kill her myself. Toying with ppls emotions and just being a whiney butt. UGH!!!!

Yes. The ending was truly horrible in my opinion. The series, in my opinion, started out amazing and then went into a spiraling downfall until it was finished.

I just found it so stupid and pathetic that everyone either left or died. Nothing really changed. And after she fought her life away and lost everything that she cherished, she's pretty much just like 'well now that that's over, i'm just going to mope'. AND the ending was not only rushed, but it completely went against everything Katniss ever believed in. Making the capital children do one last hunger games- fucking stupid. Settling down with Peeta and having children- more fucking stupid. Being a whiny mopey bitch and a shame to her sisters death- so fucking stupid it defies logic.

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