I finished the Hunger Games trilogy at Thursday. When I was young, I often got books in my hand which I simply could not stop reading. In the last years I had tried hard to overcome such impulses, and I was actually quite successful in the years. Until a colleague recommended me the Hunger Games. Actually I finished Mockingjay, the last of the trilogy, in three days.
Personally I think Mockingjay is the best of the three, especially the first third, Ashes, is my favorite. Things I really love are:
- How Collins described the devastating psychological effect war and destruction can have on people. I read a lot of descriptions about the devastation of war and violence in the past, but most of them are physical, and few psychological are really not deep. And what Collins wrote in Mockingjay is the most impressive I have read so far.
- The rebels in District 13, although almost in everything the extreme contrary to the Capitol, is in the core the same as the Capitol. I love this view. This is totally refreshing and different as the classic star-wars-evil-empire-against-good-rebels scenario. Really remarkable.
- The lyrics of The Hanging Tree. Wow. (I also very much like Rue's Lullary in The Hunger Games, the lyrics of Collins so far generally impress me.)
- The game True or Not True. I believe everyone should play this game from time to time.
- The scene where Buttercup came home and Katniss told her that her trip was vain, because Prim would never come back home. This was so moving.
- There are some very subtle but nevertheless remarkable consistencies through all three books. For example Peeta's mother said that Katniss is a survivor in The Hunger Games. In Mockingjay Gale commented that Katniss would select between Peeta and him the one she could not survive without. And at the end of the book Katniss confessed that she selected Peeta because he is the only one who can show her that despite all the losses life goes on (and thus survives).
I also love that although one can say that the book has a happy end with Peeta and Katniss confessed their love to each other, that they both survived. But the devastation was so big, that one really cannot say that it is something happy.
There is one thing that really upset me in the book. And that was the faked mission of Katniss. Actually with her action she wasted almost all lives of her crew (about ten persons), and it was totally meaningless. She didn't achieved her mission to assassinate Snow, and her action didn't brought any military advantages for the rebel. It was simply meaningless.