19 November, 2010

(Audiobook) Review - Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Young Katniss Everdeen has survived the dreaded Hunger Games not once, but twice, but even now she can find no relief. In fact, the dangers seem to be escalating: President Snow has declared an all-out war on Kattnis, her family, her friends, and all the oppressed people of District 12. The thrill-packed final installment of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy will keep young hearts pounding.

[US] [UK] is the conclusion to The Hunger Games trilogy and actually my favorite of the three.

There's definitely a split of opinion when it comes to this book. I know lots of people that hated the ending, but I thought it not only worked, but was so unexpected for me that it really made the entire series that much better.

Lots of people wanted Katniss to really exact her revenge, to blow the Capitol away and really take it to President Snow. I admit, coming into this book, I was expecting much the same. Yet, what we get is something quite different, but which in retrospect is much more fitting for the characters.

This is a warning, there will probably be spoilers if you haven't read the first two (The Hunger Games and Catching Fire), so continue if you dare. :)

Katniss is now a resident of the once thought to be desolate District 13, which is actually the center for the resistance against the Capitol. In the conclusion to Catching Fire, Katniss is whisked away while the resistance leaves Peeta to an uncertain demise at the hands of President Snow.

District 13 is quite the place. With restrictions on food intake, bans on saving food, and other constraints, the resistance is looking about as fascist as the Capitol - only lacking in the whole send your kids off to kill each other aspect.

The resistance, however, seems to be taking some steps in the right direction because some of the other districts are following suit. The Capitol has its ways and means to subvert the populace, however; most especially with the use of its broadcasts...where Peeta makes his first appearance in the book. The only problem is that Peeta is supporting the Capitol...or is he?

I don't want to go too far into this. Let it be said that the conclusion was well done, but heartbreaking, throwing in some twists that I didn't expect, but that fit perfectly with the characters and the events.

The only thing I thought wasn't done that well, and I'll spoiler alert this, was the love triangle between Peeta, Katniss, and Gale. Gale was the stalwart presence while Peeta was almost immediately taken out of the equation. With things lining up at the end of Catching Fire, especially with people drawing the Twilight line between Team Peeta and Team Gale, more should have been done to keep this going or at least keep it at play.

Audio Commentary

While at first I had a hard time with Carolyn McCormick's reading of The Hunger Games (the first in the trilogy), I grew to like her by Mockingjay. She's a bit monotone, but the more I listened, the more I realized it fits the setting and situations quite well.

Why Should You Read The Hunger Games?

Well, if you read speculative fiction at all, you've probably already read this series and moved on. If you are one of the few who haven't, it's not a bad series. The characters are likable, the situations are made realistic, the story is straight-forward and fast-paced, and it's even thought-provoking at times. It is told in first person, of which I know some aren't the biggest of fans, but overall Recommended.

3.5 out of 5 Stars


Jamie Gibbs said...

Thanks for this. I'm not really a fan of first person narrative, but I've heard so many good things about this series that I think I need to read it just to see what the fuss is about. I'll give it a shot :)

Bryce L. said...

It's not a bad series. I know there are plenty of people that like it a whole lot more than me. It's simple, straight-forward and an interesting concept overall. Can't go too wrong with that. :)

Melissa (My World...in words and pages) said...

I was really curious to see what you thought of this conclusion. I enjoyed it and I think a lot of people where looking for more love with the triangle. But I felt it was a nice ending. I was hoping to learn more about the government and where they would go with it in the end, but didn't really get that. I know that it was from Katniss's view and okay with why we didn't get that social finishing. :) Glad you got through to finish the series.

Bryce L. said...

and ended up enjoying it overall too. :) I wasn't it's biggest fan ever, but I'm glad I read them all. Not a bad series at all.

Elfy said...

It was readable, but definitely went downhill after the first book. She should have stopped after that. I can see why it's pulled in the YA audience, but can't see it living on in the hearts and minds the way other works have.