Monday, September 12, 2011
LS5385: YA Lit / Sci Fi / Dystopia
Hooray!! It was a killer for me to read the first two books in this series and not finish it out, but after a summer of reading books for kids, I took advantage of reading GROWN UP books in the brief reprieve between semesters. I also secretly hoped that my fall Lit class would force me to read Mockingjay, and my wish came true!!
Anyhoo. . . I quickly became absorbed in the story of good ol' lady Katniss out to save the world, again, from the dumb adults. This third book is understandably quite a bit grimmer and gloomier. Also, the violence has escalated and it seemed to me that Collins described the gore in a bit more detail than the prior two novels, and the death count is high.
Having read all three - which anyone who starts the first is probably going to do - I might push the recommended audience just a smidgen older than I initially had judged. The third book is more disturbing to me than the prior books, as it's describing war, and it's war where the players fight dirty. Where in Hunger Games and Catching Fire, the events didn't feel realistic, much of Mockingjay did feel realistic. Perhaps not so much in some of the specific weapons of war (Mutts, for example), but in the absolute devastation, destruction, and anguish that's brought on by war: the senselessness of some acts of war and of course, the massive body count of innocent people.
I am glad to have read the full series and enjoyed the final book, but I do not think it was as well-done as the first two. The only thing that didn't play well was in Katniss's final "act" for which she was put on trial and forgiven. Mockingjay was a necessary conclusion to the story, and it did have an acceptable and believable resolution.