I definitely recommend you read both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire to fully enjoy and understand Mockingjay. There is absolutely no way you could skip and read out of order with this series. (Unless you just feel like confusing yourself ).
Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she’s made it out of the bloody arena alive, she’s still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. Who do they think should pay for the unrest? Katniss. And what’s worse, President Snow has made it clear that no one else is safe either. Not Katniss’s family, not her friends, not the people of District 12. (Taken from Amazon.ca)
Despite staying up late at night to read this book, I’m still not sure what to make of it. It’s not that I did not like it. I did, but then at times, I didn’t. Unlike the first two books I actually put this book down several times and left it to read something else. Perhaps because the overall tone of this book is very bleak, and Katniss has a very apathetic attitude and it’s not really until the end where she finally breaks out of her depressing rut. So reading through this book can be felt as a heavy duty chore.
I would have to say however, I started to like Katniss despite her behaviour. She did a lot of growing up, and her development character-wise is very well done and accurate according to the situation and environment she’s surrounded in. Yet in some ways, I think it was a bit overdone in some parts and I couldn’t help but feel like I wanted to smack her sometimes.
Character development overall in this novel is excellent. Peeta’s sudden change really got to me and I almost wanted to quit reading because he wasn’t the same and he was my favorite character. Still, it was well done and I thought the development of both Peeta and Katniss were the best I have ever seen in any novels I have read so far.
The plot was good, however I’m not sure younger readers would be suited to read this. The level of violence is much higher than the first two books, and the ending has a particular scene where it’s especially horrifying to read. It actually shocked me as I never thought something like this would be in a young adult novel. There is a lot of action scenes in the book, particularly towards the end where the story reaches a breaking point.
What did bother me a little was the sudden abrupt outcomes of certain characters in the book. It was like as if the author just wanted to quickly tie some loose ends and it did seem like it was a rush job.
Upon finishing the book, it left me feeling subdued. I liked it, but I didn’t. I know I should not have expected a happy ending considering the bleak subject matter of this series but perhaps I expected a lot more to happen. It definitely was not what I expected. That being said though, the ending was all right perhaps I wanted just a little bit more. It was a pleasure reading this fantastic series and I have no regrets.
I give it an 8 out of 10.
SPOILER ALERT: You should have seen me when reading about Peeta. I was about to go into tears because he was going to be ruined!!! alas am glad I read it through. Didn’t I tell everyone Gale was a total arse??? yeahhhhhh told ya so.