A Girl Who Reads: Mockingjay

QUICK INFO

Title: Mockingjay

Author: Suzanne Collins

Publication: 2010

Major Characters: Katniss Everdeen and friends

Main Plot: Katniss Everdeen has sparked something that she can no longer control. But should she want to? And, how can it be the subject of both her dreams and her nightmares? When she's become the face of a movement but not truly at it's all-knowing center, it's nearly impossible to know what's true and what isn't. But the odds are in her favor - real or not real?

Favorite Line(s):

"It takes ten times as long to put yourself back together as it does to fall apart."

"You're still trying to protect me. Real or not real," he whispers. "Real," I answer. "Because that's what you and I do, protect each other."

"There are still moments when he clutches the back of a chair and hangs on until the flashbacks are over. I wake screaming from nightmares of mutts and lost children. But his arms are there to comfort me. And eventually his lips."

My Rating: 5

Considering that this is the final installment of the Hunger Games series, I have to be careful not to give too much away. (We're in the business of reviews not spoilers). It's tough not to gush about this book though because I thought it was the perfect culmination to the story of Katniss Everdeen. The first two books introduce us to Katniss, a 16 year-old girl from one of the 13 districts of Panem, the post-apocolyptic nation that arose after the fall of North America. The reader learns to love this young girl, whose rebellious yet fiercely loyal nature is on display from the first page. She's compassionate but not afraid to kill when she must, big-hearted but capable of holding back tears when she needs to. By the time of the Reaping in the Hunger Games book, I wanted to be Katniss Everdeen. And that hasn't changed in the 1,200+ pages of her story.

When I closed the cover of Mockingjay, her story felt finished. Those who've read the 3rd book may disagree because, without ruining it for those who haven't read it, it's not a neat little bow. But life's not nice and neat. It's messy. That's true of war and true of life. While some things get resolved, other things remain undone. And that's okay. I particularly loved the final chapter. There isn't much action really, but the chapter covers a lot of ground, taking us months deeper into the story. It's quite a bit of thinking and reflecting, but it answers what I consider to be the burning question of the series: What will be left of Katniss, of everyone, when this is all over? Collins answers this question indirectly as she explains in simple, elegant language the everyday life of most of the characters. Not all the characters ended up as I would've hoped because we all play favorites. Yet, in my opinion, the future of each character rang completely true to who they were - warts, (liquor-addictions,martyrdom) and all.

Have you read Mockingjay? What did you think of the ending? And better yet, what should I read next?!