Mockingjay (Hunger Games #3) by Suzanne Collins

17 year old Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games. Twice. And Snow has exacted his revenge by destroying District 12. The few survivors have relocated to 13, the home of the rebellion, and Katniss is called upon to become the Mockingjay, figurehead of the resistance. But at what cost to her? Her friends? Her family? Or is she just a pawn in a bigger Hunger Games that engulfs the whole capitol?

I read this originally about a year ago, when the Hunger Games movie came out, and decided to read the books again with a somewhat more critical eye (from the technical, writing perspective).

I may have said it before, but Collins is a master (mistress?) of the art of writing a hard and brutal third act. I know I’m a big softie, but even the second time through, I couldn’t read the last couple of chapters more than a page at a time. Characters and plot are artfully crafted, but there is a sense, particularly in Part 3 that it’s Collins who is the real enemy, not the Capitol or the rebels. Obstacles (and deaths) seem to be put there because she can, not because they serve the story, and that, I think, lets it down slightly.

Other than that though, she doesn’t pull her punches, and we go through the wringer along with Katniss, and feel her sense of loss and devastation at the end.

Awesome writing, and upgraded my original rating to ★★★★★.

I really don’t know how they’re going to turn it into a 12A rated movie though.