I always seem to catch book trends after they’re over. I
didn’t read Harry Potter until just before the Deathly Hallows came
out. I read Twillight, well, because I wanted to see what all the
fuss was about. This weekend, I finally read the Hunger Games
series. I knew it was a series I wanted to read from the kindle
sample. From the moment Katniss described her relationship with
Buttercup, I knew I wanted to learn more about the girl who
admitted to wanting to kill the kitten because it was another mouth
to feed. It was still months before I carved out time to read this

*spoilers will be discussed so read on only if you’ve
already read the books. Otherwise, please stop as spoilers will
ruin this series. I read it honestly having no idea how it ended
and I am so glad I didn’t know.*

So Katniss. I read the entire
series in a period of 72 hours so I got a good feel for how Katniss
changed over the story arc all at once. Katniss was ultimately
about holding onto that which makes us human during war so it
touched me, deeply. Even had I not instantly liked her, I could
have related to her but the very moment she describes her
relationship with the cat, I felt like this girl would do anything
for her sister and in that, she was a survivor.

I loved the part in Mockingjay when Gale and Peeta are talking about Katniss and they
say she will choose whichever one she thinks she cannot live
without. I won’t pretend to have guessed how it was going to turn
out but I will say that when the person she could not live without
turned out to be her sister, I was a goner. I would have forgiven
Katniss any crime.

I loved both Peeta and Gale. I honestly felt
like she was truly conflicted about how she felt for both of them
and had no idea which one she would end up with. For a while, I
thought she would be alone and honestly, it would not have changed
the end of the book for me in it’s power. Ultimately, though, I
think she had to choose Peeta because Gale came to represent
everything that was before the war, that she could never return to,
and actions taken during the war that she could not erase. For me,
there was a difference between Gale collapsing the Nut and Katniss
killing in the arena and not for one second did I doubt Katniss’
reaction to the horror of the forced mine collapse.

There are
probably folks who have a problem with her killing the rebel
president and not the capital president. Once more, Katniss chose
based on the one person she could not live without. Snow could have
taken either Gale or Peeta and she would have gone on. Sure, she
would have been wrecked, but Coin was the person who not only took
away the one person she couldn’t survive without, Coin represented
simply moving the Capitol from Panem to District 13. Why did she
fight if it was to only change one dictator for another? Katniss
was smart enough to recognize that, despite her grief. Even when
she voted for one final Games, I could forgive her because
everything she did from the moment her sister died was focused on
joining her.

At the end, Katniss did not retain her humanity but
she held onto her sense of justice so maybe she did keep hold on
what made her human. She was tormented for the rest of her days by
what she did and what she lost but I did not ever get a sense that
she regretted killing Coin. She walked through the abyss and
eventually, she put the pieces back together. Patched and scarred
but together.

It’s a rare book that keeps me up and keeps hold of
me days after it’s ended. I can’t remember having a stronger
reaction to a series in a very long time. Even now, I get choked up
thinking about the books. They were in a word, incredible and books
that are on my keeper shelf in hardback forever. I’d love to know
what you thought of them.

I hope you’re only reading this if you’ve
read them but if not, please read them. You will not be