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Mockingjay (The Final Book of The Hunger Games)

The third book of Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.

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A Dark End to an Excellent Series

  • Aug 30, 2010
  • by
The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins comes to a bloody end with Mockingjay, the series' final volumes. (I reviewed the first two volumes here and here.)

The story takes place in North America, sometime in the future. A civil war between the Capitol and its thirteen districts resulted in the annihilation of District 13 and the imposition of the Hunger Games on the remaining twelve. For seventy-five years, each district has sent one girl and one boy between the ages of 12 and 18 to kill or be killed in the arena.

In The Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mallark represent District 12. At the end of that year's game, Katniss and Peeta are the final contestants. Instead of killing one another, however, they deliver a choice to the Capitol: either both live or both kill themselves.

Catching Fire picks up where The Hunger Games ends. The Capitol lets Katniss and Peeta live. Knowing, however, that Katniss (especially) is a threat to the Capitol's political interests, they inaugurate a new hunger game, where previous victors fight one another. At the end of the book, a rebellion breaks out, with Katniss being rescued by forces from the long-thought-annihilated District 13 and Peeta being held captive and tortured by the Capitol.

Mockingjay begins several weeks after the end of Catching Fire. Katniss is recovering from her wounds, when District 13's leader, President Coin, recruits her to serve as the face of the rebellion against the Capitol. The rebellion rescues Peeta, who has been tortured and brainwashed, but in the process of the fight, Katniss learns that neither President Coin nor District 13 are on the side of the angels.

Mockingjay is a very dark and violent book, especially to be produced by Scholastic for the "young adult" market, i.e., teenagers. It doesn't glamorize war. Indeed, it verges on moral equivalence. But it does raise profound questions about nationalism, war, terrorism, and moral choice.

My primary criterion for good fiction is whether I can put it down once I've started to read it. Starting with The Hunger Games, I couldn't put this book down, and I could barely wait for the next book of the series to be published. Now that the series is over, I'm looking forward to Suzanne Collins's next series.

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More Mockingjay reviews
review by . December 04, 2010
When The Hunger Games first debuted in 2008, I began to read it and I was stunned by the books excellent pacing, amusing characters and the amusing situation of throwing several people into an arena to see who comes out alive.  It was, for the most part, a rather simple book.  One that was dark, violent and mysterious but it never glorified the act of violence, nor were the more violent moments hard to swallow.  For all intents and purposes, The Hunger Games was a fantastic book.    …
review by . December 22, 2010
MockingJay: Great Book But Not The Best (Spoiler Alert!)
Warning! Don't read if you plan to read book 2 and haven't yet. There's a few spoilers for those who've not read book 3 yet but not many. You've been warned, read at own risk. Otherwise, enjoy.      The Hunger Games Series has been a wonderful ride. Suzanne Collins has created a wonderful world of the ashes of the USA and North America. Panem is the country where you meet Katniss Everdeen from District 12 and are introduced. Then readers learn fully about …
review by . December 24, 2010
Dystopia, Big Brother and post-apocalypse are themes that have been included in novels so often that it could well be a life's work for a librarian to prepare an exhaustive catalogue of titles. But, in terms of quality, the devil is in the details and Suzanne Collins has justifiably taken the world by storm. Suzanne Collins HUNGER GAMES trilogy, inspired by the legend of Theseus and the Minotaur, is an innovative, dare I say unique, young adult twist on the recurring themes of violence, cruely, …
review by . September 07, 2010
I was fully prepared to rave about 'Mockingjay,' the last book of the Hunger Games series. I was ready to love it as much as I did the first two, and to channel that love into words of high praise. So imagine my surprise when I finished the book and was left with an unexpected feeling: disappointment.    I got a sense while reading the book that Suzanne Collins was making an attempt to create a big finish ending, which is another strange thing, because I felt like 'Mockingjay' …
Quick Tip by . December 24, 2010
Suzanne Collins' brilliant conclusion to the HUNGER GAMES trilogy, graphically showcases the horrors of war - loss, heroism, courage, death and destruction, bravery, leadership - and injects horrific new meaning to the "terror" in "terrorism". Her depiction of the aphorism "Power corrupts but absolute power corrupts absolutely" is spellbinding.
review by . August 23, 2010
   It's all back!  The drama, the great characters, the relentless pacing and the delicious politics.  It's all back with Suzanne Collin's "Mockingjay" -- the 3rd and finally installment in the "Hunger Games" trilogy.      And for those of you who didn't get a chance to re-read the series, don't worry, Collins does a great job in the beginning chapters of firing things up again.  She ignited my own sense of loss …
review by . November 13, 2010
Katniss Everdeen, the girl on fire, the spark that started a revolution, once again finds her life in chaos. Rescued from the Quarter Quell and whisked to District 13 and the seat of the rebel cause, Katniss is expected to take up her role as the figurehead of the rebellion; as the Mockingjay so ready and willing to fight the Capitol. Peeta is captured. Probably dead–it would be best if he were dead. District 12 is gone. And Katniss finds she can no longer hide from the war she never meant …
review by . September 20, 2010
Mockingjay is the third and final book in the Hunger Games trilogy, and again, author Suzanne Collins, leads expertly straight into the story, weaving just enough reminders into her character's thoughts to bring readers up to speed without needing to slow the action to explain. The author has an amazing talent for clarity in a complex tale, for balancing showing and telling, and for describing action and introspection each with fearful intensity. She keeps the reader glued to the page, and keeps …
review by . August 30, 2010
Never has a series touched me like The Hunger Games series. Every moment, every heart ache, every bit of dialogue is real. The characters reactions, moments of clarity, moments of insanity, pain, loss, love, hate, anger, hurt, even their drug induced stupors are real, real real.    Parajunkee loved this book? Real.    REVIEW: The culmination of Katniss' adventure comes to an end in the 3rd installment of The Hunger Games, Mockingjay. She has been pulled from …
review by . August 24, 2010
Katniss Everdeen has once again just barely escaped death in the arena, but this time her rescue is due to the rebels in District 13. Katniss should be happy that she has powerful allies that are willing to fight the Capitol, but it doesn't take long for her to realize that like the Capitol, District 13 is only interested in using her and making her the face of the rebellion, the Mockingjay. Katniss is sick of being someone's pawn, but the rebellion can't be won without her participation. The only …
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George Paul Wood ()
Ranked #270
I'm happily married to a maximally perfect woman, and we have a baby cuter than which none can be imagined. For a living, I'm the Director of Ministerial Resourcing at AG HQ in Springfield, MO. … more
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Praise for the Hunger Games series: "Whereas Katniss kills with finesse, Collins writes with raw power." -Time Magazine "Collins has joined J.K. Rowling and Stephanie Meyer as a writer of children's books that adults are eager to read." -Bloomberg.com "Perfect pacing and electrifying world building." -Booklist, starred review "A humdinger of a cliffhanger will leave readers clamoring for volume three." -Kirkus reviews, starred review "Forget Edward or Jacob... readers will be picking sides- Peeta or Gale?" -Publishers Weekly, starred review "Leaves enough questions tantalizingly unanswered for readers to be desperate for the next installment." -School Library Journal, starred review
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ISBN-10: 0439023513
ISBN-13: 978-0439023511
Author: Suzanne Collins
Genre: Children's Books, Teens
Publisher: Scholastic Press
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