End of Mockingjay – love or hate it? Why?

So, I’ve been trying to get my sister to read the Hunger Games books, but so far she is refusing on the grounds that a lot of people didn’t like the end of Mockingjay. I personally thought it ended just about the only way it could have, and liked the ending very much, but I know from what I’ve read in the book blogging community that the ending was polarizing.

So, I thought I’d throw this out there to my readers. Did you love or hate the ending? Why? And would you still recommend the series to someone who doesn’t have a lot of time to read?

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43 Responses to End of Mockingjay – love or hate it? Why?

  1. Word Lily
    Twitter: Wordlily
    says:

    I loved the ending. Like you, it’s hard for me to imagine it could have ended any other way.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Hannah – me, too – though in the comments below, I see lots of things that people didn’t like. :)

  2. Laura @ I'm Booking It
    Twitter: bookingit
    says:

    I’m trying to figure out what aspect of the ending of the book would be that controversial. I thought the entire book was close to perfect in doing what it set out to do.

    I absolutely, completely loved what I’d call the end. It was a chance for me to breathe again, and the only healing I can imagine for people that damaged.

    There are aspects of the wrapping up of the action that I certainly didn’t love, although I did find them extremely powerful, and I could understand someone wanting to avoid them.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Laura – yes, some of the things that happen at the end were emotionally difficult – but I understood why the author made the choices she did, what she was trying to say.

  3. jenn aka the picky girl
    Twitter: picky_girl
    says:

    This was my least favorite of all the books, and I really really didn’t like the epilogue. But I frequently don’t like epilogues, so that isn’t saying too much. To me, it just felt a bit contrived. Honestly, it’s been a while since I read it, but I will say it affected me enough that I can’t say I love the trilogy. The first book was by far my favorite and, I think, the most successful of the three.

    That said, I’d still read them and recommend them.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Jenn – I’m glad to hear that you would still recommend them. I know that a lot of people didn’t like the epilogue. I’m a sucker for at least a little bit of hope, though, so I liked it.

  4. Natalie ~ the Coffee and a Book Chick
    Twitter: coffeebookchick
    says:

    **spoiler-filled** I hated the ending. I didn’t like what happened to Prue, nor did I care for Katniss selecting Peeta, as it didn’t make sense (at least to me). Like The Picky Girl stated, this was also my least favorite of the trilogy and also made me not love the whole series. The Hunger Games was the best of the three and I felt that the Mockingjay was a let-down. That said, I still think everyone should read it anyway. Much better to be a part of the discussion versus not!

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Natalie – another one who hated the epilogue! :) I was always on Team Peeta, but I can see how if you weren’t, the ending would be a let-down.

      • Keems says:

        ***spoiler *** I’ve always been Team Peeta too! I hated the ending. There. I finally found a place where I can say that! I’m upset that every part of her life was destroyed, including their bodies. It just seemed like she settled for Peeta in the end. I’d hoped for more love to be in the story. I ended up bawling because two damaged people hobbled off into the sunset together with no real hope for a better future. It just made it seem that in the end, noone won. Complete letdown.

  5. Stephanie says:

    I agree that the ending was polarizing! I liked the actual ending but the epilogue seemed a little too sugar coated for me. I would have preferred the epilogue be left off all together, but I am guessing that would not have been a popular choice!

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Stephanie – I think the ending would have been just as polarizing, epilogue or no – just different people upset! LOL

  6. I loooooved Mockingjay. I thought it was a very brave book in that she didn’t write some amazing transcendent story where Katniss kicked everyone’s butts and everyone lived happily ever after, but rather it was a really smart look at government, revolution, what it means and costs. I felt like she pulled together all her themes really well. I mean even the epilogue was heavily foreshadowed in Catching Fire, and is IMO necessary to the structure of the books.

    Mockingjay is my favorite of the trilogy because it moved me so much. I think I expected it to sort of wrap things up really triumphantly, I didn’t expect to be so devastated and to have so many feelings. Having said that I understand why people didn’t like it, I just don’t agree.

    It’s always interesting to me to see how people rank the trilogy. For me it’s probably Mockingjay>Catching Fire>The Hunger Games

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Amy – I personally loved the epilogue. I think it showed how, in spite of everything, Katniss was finally able to come to some kind of peace and still have hope. I don’t know if I would call it my favorite book – I have a hard time picking, because I see them as one long narrative.

  7. Melissa
    Twitter: myeclecticbooks
    says:

    ***SPOILER ALERT***

    I thought the ending fitting and might even consider Mockingjay my favorite of the trilogy despite the fact that it was definitely a bit more plodding than the other two. The third volume wasn’t predicated on the action and drama and commercialism that was The Games. (Despite appearing to the contrary with the camera crew dogging them everywhere to film their spots) It explored the impact and consequences of the games, the damage sustained and just how very broken everyone involved (from the stylists to the tributes) became and the rebellion and how much worse everything had to get before any sort of healing could begin.

    I think that a lot of people were looking for a happily ever after ending and I can’t blame them. (Sugar coated epilogue aside) But I don’t see how this could have ended any other way. Wars aren’t pretty and it would have been completely unbelievable had there not been horrific losses along the way. I thought that it was actually sadly poetic that Prim…who had been originally destined for the arena and certain death did not ultimately escape her fate.

    Gale & Katniss both knew that their possible happy ending could never happen after those silver parachutes dropped…Who else but Peeta had gone through as much if not more(the trackerjacker brainwashing) than Katniss (and most of it at her side supporting her-the yang to her yin), who else was as horribly broken…

    Melissa @ Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Melissa – I agree – there is simply no way that Gale could have ever “gotten” Katniss – ever known her completely, because he didn’t go through the Games. Peeta knew that side of her. And there is simply no way that she could ever feel the same way about Gale after what happened to Prim.

  8. Marg
    Twitter: MargReads
    says:

    I think the epilogue should have been left off. The last line of the last chapter was great and then there was that epilogue!

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Marg – I don’t remember what the last line before the epilogue was!

  9. Marleen Kennedy
    Twitter: Marleen (Meentje63)
    says:

    I loved Mockingjay as much as the other two books. I really enjoyed the whole trilogy tremendously. And I agree with what Amy said above. I like that Collins didn’t take the easy way out but made it as realistic as she could. And I was perfectly happy for the man Katniss ended up with. In fact, she ended up exactly where I hoped she would.

  10. Kailana says:

    My sister just read The Hunger Games and Catching Fire. She NEVER reads. I never said a word about Mockingjay and she hasn’t read it yet, but so far she is loving the series. She like never reads…. This is almost shocking behaviour. I am the one that got her to read it…

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Kelly – that’s so cool! Maybe your sister could talk to my sister…. :) She has read and enjoyed a couple of series I recommended (Mortal Instruments and Caster Chronicles) but she’s not interested in this one. Oh, well.

  11. I haven’t read it and our copy of The Hunger Games has mysteriously disappeared. Thanks for reminding me. I suspect the youngster has loaned it to someone.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Nancy – my daughter has a tendency to loan our books out, too – without telling me!

  12. Sheila (Book Journey)
    Twitter: bookjourney
    says:

    **ALSO SPOILERS**I read it so long ago its hard to recall details but I do know I felt much like Natalie (Coffee And A Book Chick). It was my least favorite of the three books. I dont know exactly what I was expecting but the last part of book just made me mad… I didnt like that Prim died, after all Katniss went through it just didnt seem right and yeah I know life isnt fair but after all she seen I just wanted her to catch a break. And I cant remember why now, but I know I was Team Gale. In hind site, I should have just been Team Katniss.

    All that said, I hope yet this year to listen to Catching Fire and Mockingjay on audio as a couple months ago I listened to Hunger Games. Perhaps a second time around with thisone will give me a clearer understanding.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Sheila – I can completely understand why anyone who was Team Gale would hate the last book!

  13. ibeeeg says:

    I, do believe, that I am in the minority. I did not care much for the series on a whole.
    I LOVED Hunger Games, but thought Catching Fire let me down a bit as I thought of it as a replay…same similar concept by placing Katniss in the arena again. Then Mockingjay was too all over the place for me. what did Mockingjay in for me was Katniss taking over strategic planning, and leading a team of adults who were more experienced than she. For me, the book was a bit of a mess with the onslaught towards the ending part. It has been awhile since I read the books so I do not have clear specifics, but just remember this being my over all feeling. The actual ending did not bother me much. I liked both Gale and Peeta. Most likely preferred Gale, but Peeta was fine too. The ending was depressing, and such a sad statement. Anyway, I do not recommend the series, but am very hopeful for the movie series based on how well I liked the Hunger Games movie.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Deanna- the cool thing about this series, is that no matter whether people love it or hate it, it has them talking about what they’re reading – which is always a good thing, in my opinion. :)

  14. Melissa
    Twitter: avidreader12
    says:

    Mockingjay really worked for me. I can’t imagine a different ending. I know there were a lot of complaints about who died and how quickly some people died and who Katniss ended up with, but to me it was realistic. War doesn’t give you a big dramatic death for everyone, it also bonds people who may not have ended up together otherwise. Anyway, I loved it, and the whole series and would definitely recommend it to others. I think it’s an amazing conversation starter.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Melissa – It definitely does start – and continue – conversations!

  15. Sherry Early says:

    I liked the ending. I remember thinking it was similar to the ending of LOTR; anyone–Frodo or Katniss–who goes through something like that, suffering of that magnitude, doesn’t come out “living happily ever after.” Frodo was wounded and finally had to leave the enjoyment of Middle Earth to Sam while he went off to seek some rest. Katniss and Peeta are wounded, too, and their ending is hopeful, but subdued, as a result of all they’ve been through and all they’ve lost.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Sherry – I’d never put that together before – the similarity between Katniss and Frodo and how they chose to live the rest of their lives. Thanks for pointing that out!

  16. irene says:

    Since I’ve been trying to read off my shelves (and this series was not there) I’m only planning on reading it in April. I’ll come back and comment then.

  17. Debbie's World of Books
    Twitter: debworldofbooks
    says:

    I would definitely recommend this book to pretty much anyone but I do have to say I was not a fan of Mockingjay. Yes, we all knew how it was going to end even though I was rooting for the other guy :) My issue was how the book dragged in spots and then important parts seemed to happen so fast if you blinked you would miss it. And then the epilogue portion just felt unnecessary to me and did not fit the series at all.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Debbie – another epilogue-hater! LOL I remember there being a lot of controversy over the epilogue at the end of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I think because I’m a sucker for a happy ending, I liked them. :)

  18. Michelle says:

    Potential spoilers – read at your own risk.

    Better late than never, but I LOVED how this series ended. Like you, I think it was about the only way for the series to end. Collins was able to get her point across and still made it realistic. The sense of hope at the end, by Katniss’ decision to have children, is perfect and truly does give the reader a sense that there is some good in the world and that humanity can and will recover from the worst things possible.

  19. Shannon Lashley says:

    I have to admit that mockingjay wasn’t my favorite of the trilogy it just feel as if the books were on a certain trajectory and mockingjay was a little anticlimactic for my tastes. I understand why Collins went that route, but i was a little disappointed, i didn’t mind the ending but i feel like for majority of the book i was waiting for something, that just wasn’t happening. And the fact that Peeta was just not himself, everything just felt drab, even the flicker of hope at the end was muted , which i get, i know everything couldn’t be all happy but…idk i felt like this book just had completely different tone, that was probably intentional but it was just in such a stark contrast form catching fire, to a point where i was like did I miss a book….. The book in itself wasn’t bad, beautiful but underwhelming for my tastes….. I don’t know if i’m making sense. It was realistic but just a bit too realistic. Still the writing was amazing throughout, that is irrefutable but just not what i was expecting.

  20. Shannon Lashley says:

    Or maybe cause i just really liked Peeta and he was either physically or mentally not present for the entire book.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Shannon – I know that the Peeta storyline in the last book was difficult for a lot of readers. I felt so terribly sorry for him – and for Katniss!

      • Shannon Lashley says:

        yeah i just feel like throughout the books there is so much uncertainty and the steady constant (apart from katniss love for Prim) is Peeta’s love for Katniss, and to have that thrown for a loop, was kinda shocking, wasn’t bad just wasn’t really expecting it… was a little sad, maybe if I read it agin knowing what’s to come it may not be so bad.