Thursday, December 22, 2011


Mockingjay is the last book of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy, which I thoroughly enjoyed. The novel is noteworthy for its refusal to paint anyone in simple or pure terms. War is dark and brutal, and no one can say with certainty how they will act when in its grip. More to the point of the trilogy, not only can no one protect children during wartime, but neither can they control how children act, for good or ill.

In this case, the context is civil war as the Capitol struggles to maintain control over the country. Both sides use TV as much as possible, staged representations of what they want people to believe. In fact, both sides are dictatorial, albeit in different ways. Even the "good" side is distasteful. The protagonist, Katniss, constantly worries that she is getting people killed and ponders how she is being manipulated by the leaders who are ostensibly on her side.

The plot twists constantly and violently, leaving you (or at least me) in doubt about how it would end. I'm not giving anything away by saying that, like war itself, the result is not rosy.


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