This post is going to possibly be riddled with spoilers so proceed with caution.
When Catching Fire ended I was in an uproar of "Where is Peeta!?!?! DID SOMEONE SAVE PEETA!?!?!" as was Katniss. For a long while, like... the first four chapters... I kept telling myself that surely they were fooling me and Peeta was in District 13 and completely safe. But... well we all know about that (if you've read the book, I mean).
Peeta is finally 'saved' and completely nuts and... ugh. It broke my heart. The golden boy with the bread reduced to this cruel thing. But it gives you more depth to his character and you become even more attached to him as he struggles to overcome his obstacles while so often he was seen to be liked by everyone.
I thought Collins made really strong characters in all of her other books but in Mockingjay she seemed to really twist them around and make you know every fiber of their beings. You thought you knew the characters beforehand, but you didn't, not really. Characters I once disliked I liked by the end of this book, others that I had liked I grew cautious of, and many I was heartbroken over.
Collins really doesn't hold back. You think she's willing to go to any great heights in the first two books but this one, wow. She really is ruthless. But how could she not be? The very series is about the revolution of a land. Revolutions are generally not happy or clean or bloodless. The very subject matter calls for destruction and death and Collins is sure to bring it. No one is safe and I was near tears through out an assortment of scenes.
Katniss sort of falls apart but... I try not to judge too harshly because looking at the broad spectrum these characters have gone through a lot. Post-traumatic stress disorder, anyone? I expect the characters to kind of fall from grace after everything that's occurred and that certainly happens. Maybe I didn't like it so much, the falls from grace and this final book combined, but I think it was really necessary for the author to write in this way.
I won't say who died... but allow me to say that it pulled at my heart strings and the damn Hanging Tree song was stuck in my head for days after I finished the book. The ending wrapped everything up as nicely as it could despite what had happened during the course of the past three books and I was glad that Katniss had her final stand, so to speak.
While this was certainly my least favorite of the books it was still well written and I found it so hard to put it down. This series finally makes YA literature something worth reading again. The genre was destroyed by fangirling of many poorly written books but this series really gives hope for the future of the YA genre. A movie is being made based off of the books and while I have a mixture of feelings about Hollywood having to turn every book into a movie... I am sort of excited to see it develop.
This series is worth the read whether you're a teenager or an adult, male or female, and I promise you that. Go out to the store and pick up all three now, not just the first book. but all three. Because you will fly through each book and crave the next until you have it in your possession.