I finally completed my read of The hunger games trilogy, with the last volume, titled Mockingjay. Although I quite feel that the series was reaching a stale point, I managed to continue to see what the author can invent for a third book.
Ever since the beginning, the darker theme of this book is revealed. I don’t know if for everyone, the author managed to change the book paradigm from a simple teenage good-evil eternal battle to a more psychological and deep novel, but for me it didn’t quite succeed. I can see the attempts, but the success is a bit far.
What I mean by this, is that our hero, Katniss, is no longer eager to do all the ‘good’ deeds against the all-evil capitol and president Snow, and this time she weights in all her actions much better. We can see inner struggle, the fight for freedom, which is merely an illusion, and we can see that every action and act has a consequence, rather than categorizing each based on the good or evil label.
We are presented with District 13, the initial potential savior, which eventually turns more and more into a second version of the Capitol. I have a feeling that District 13 was the capitol initially in the first wars, and the author wants to tell us that history had a reason, and it’s repeating itself.
We see a devastated Katniss, full of anger, pain and remorse. We see much more bleak and death compared to the other books. I feel the other books were a hero novel, this time, Mockingjay is a novel of pain. Pain on all fronts, inflicted, self-inflicted, unavoidable. I would even call it an encyclopedia of pain.
We see pain on Peeta, who is completely rewritten, into something new, from a simple initial character, driven by a kind heart and pure love for Katniss, turned into a confused mind, an ill body, and a relic of a spine complete man.
We see another president, Coin, the president of 13th, who is willing to do anything to keep power and get more power. Including turning into Snow, and doing again the main one thing which brought down the Capitol: the Hunger games, with the children of their enemy as the main protagonists.
The author emphasizes again on the remote control: hurting people we care about to keep us in control. The whole Hunger Games idea, the idea behind hijacking Peeta, torturing the close ones, the loved ones. To urge everyone to comply to their desires.
We see death and despair, and the end is again bleak. The author kills off several characters, including Prim, Katniss’ sister, Finnick, but keeps Peeta, or the new version of himself.
Katniss is no longer the young girl we met. She turns into a relic of pain, but we still have hope in the end, that humanity can thrive, and happiness and joy maybe still exists somewhere.
In the end, the author tries to shift the trilogy paradigm, from teenage hero book to a psychological novel, but, up to you to understand if she managed it or not.