Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
So I've now read Mockingjay, the finale to Suzanne Collin's Hunger Games series. What did I think? Well, I don't want to spoil any part of the book for those who haven't read it yet, but I think I'm safe saying this: I feel like the first book in the trilogy was jaw-droppingly fantastic. The concept is so easy to understand and so well executed. Young girl must kill other children in a fight to the death that's broadcast on national television. Oh yeah--and she doesn't want to kill anyone. The tension in that book is extreme, and it's a blast to read.
The other two books in the series are still good books, but they're just not at that same level. They start delving into other areas, areas where it's just not as believable to me that a young girl could make as big of a difference as Kat makes in these books. Plus, she starts turning into a pawn used by other people. Yes, she still sticks up for herself and makes her own decisions, but part of the greatness of the first book was that it was wholly believable to me that she'd be able to do what she did in that book. The "rules" were very clearly defined, and she played according to those rules, and won.
The rules in the second two books got much blurrier. "Winning" became much more relative. Does that make the books worse? Not on its own, but because those same rules were what made the first book so great, the loss of them removes that potential for greatness, in my opinion.
So the final two books are still very good, but they're just as good as other dystopian sci-fi YA novels. Not nearly as memorable as The Hunger Games. Would I recommend them? Certainly. I thoroughly enjoyed myself throughout them.
Just keep those expectations in check.
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