Which one of the three books did you like the most or least? Why? You must be specific and elaborate on why you liked/disliked the book. What did you like about it? Character development, storyline, ending….
My favorite book of the Hunger Games series was by far the second book, Catching Fire, although I enjoyed all of the books in the series. There were a lot of reasons that this book appealed to me more than The Hunger Games or Mockingjay.
I thought that The Hunger Games was a fantastic book. It had a great cast of characters and a strong plot that engaged its readers and made them care about different characters. The author spent a lot of time developing Katniss, and as a result she is an extremely well developed character. Her relationships with the other people in the story was also developed extensively through her thoughts and actions toward them. The author also developed Rue and Prim well, even with their brevity in this book, and the readers care very quickly about what happens to them. However, there were parts of The Hunger Games that spent too much time on introspection and the reader often lost track of the other major characters. This was a stylistic choice on the part of the author, and it made the storytelling effective and compelling. However, it also made it harder for the reader to develop an attachment to Peeta in the first book because of how often his motives were questioned. Furthermore, while the reader is given plenty of reasons to dislike the Careers and several other tributes, if the author had spent a little more time developing them; it could have enhanced just how tragic the Games truly were and how the Capitol forced these children to become monsters. If she had developed their characters fully, then the spirit of the rebellion might have overcome the readers, as well as the Districts in the book.
The Tributes of the 74th Hunger Games
Mockingjay was also a great book, although not quite as good as The Hunger Games in my opinion. The first part of the book in District 13 was well developed, although a little slow and it was nice to learn how another District in Panem functioned. Before this point, we only had extensive knowledge about District 12, and some cursory knowledge about the others from the Victory Tour and a few other details. I felt that the author did a fantastic job of developing Katniss’s hurt and anger that Peeta was not saved, as well as her own inner torment about her role in the rebellion. Also, I think the interactions between Peeta and Katniss after he is finally rescued were tragic, but also very realistic based on what he had endured. I appreciated the author’s willingness to show their personal struggles, and also how they slowly started to grow back together despite those struggles. My biggest complaint about Mockingjay as a book was that the end of the book seemed incredibly rushed. We did not get to see Katniss’s trial, the continuation of Peeta’s treatment, or much that happened after Katniss returned to District 12. Further, the reader doesn’t get to see how Paylor turns out as a leader, if a new Hunger Games actually happened, and if Katniss was ever able to return to the other districts after her treatment. I felt that the book needed at least 2 or 3 more full chapters to appropriately end it with the detail the series deserved.
Katniss as the Mockingjay
As I mentioned before, my favorite book in the series was Catching Fire. There were a lot of different reasons that I loved this book. First of all, the book developed a lot more of the tributes and allowed the reader to care a lot about them. The author continued to develop Katniss, Gale, and Peeta; but she also developed Wiress, Beetee, Finnick, Johanna, and Mags into characters that the reader loved and cared about, no matter how quickly they were killed in the books. Further, the reader got to see Katniss and Peeta rekindle their relationship and start to develop real feelings for each other during the Quarter Quell. The relationship gains a lot of credibility as Katniss and Peeta fight to keep each other alive (even though they frequently disagreed about which one of them should go home). This book also shows a much softer side of Katniss, as she wakes up happy and confused by that happiness when she wakes up after she and Peeta kiss. The increase in the amount of character development created a higher sense of urgency and pain as the different deaths sadden the reader and increase Katniss’s inner torment. Overall, I felt that Catching Fire achieved a better balance between character development and plot movement than the other two books.