All parent member reviews for Mockingjay: The Hunger Games, Book 3

Parents say

(out of 48 reviews)
age 13+
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Parent of a 4, 9, and 10 year old Written bymockingbird72 November 16, 2010

Torture scenes too intense for teens

**SPOILER** If I were to make a movie in which a main character sees a friend's limbs being cut off methodically or another friend being drenched with water and then electrocuted repeatedly, there would be no question of an R or even NC-17 rating. Why are books not treated the same way? This is not young adult literature.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent Written byBookOak October 23, 2011

Not a PG-13 book.

I am appalled by this and the preceding two books in the series. Maybe I got stuck in time somewhere, but this level of violence, even if fake, is simply not acceptable in my opinion. When I read these books I am constantly wondering how my daughter's perspective is being changed. I am trying to talk to her about this and that we should guard against violence of this nature. We've talked about Roman gladiators and the torture of Christians in Roman times, about witch trails and about the holocaust, as well as torture in dictatorships and other situations. I'm constantly trying to tell her that violence is NOT an OK choice and that we abhor violence and especially torture and creative ways of killing human beings. What I fail to understand is how this book is appropriate for 12-year olds. All I want to do is toss the entire series in the trash can, where I think they belong - right with slasher movies and the like. If this book was made into a movie, it would not carry a PG-13 rating, but an R or NC-17.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Parent of a 5 and 8 year old Written byMarinMom73 August 11, 2011

A fantastic, but bloody ending - really for 16+

This is the bloodiest book of the series, where they dive into a full out realistic war. This is not pretty - friends die and bad things happen to our 2 heroes. Not for the light-hearted. Still, I believe this is a great story line and a very exciting plot. But, it REALLY isn't for kids below high school. I believe the author is trying to show the true ugly side of war, cruel governments, and the corruption of power.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Adult Written bymarintx December 6, 2010

Good for older teenagers, but too much for tweens

I read the trilogy, and while I liked it a lot, I would not want my kids to read it before they are in high school. Particularly this last book, Mockingjay, contains some disturbing content and is quite violent. A number of essential characters are killed off in horrible ways, and the main character goes through horrifying experiences. I am not sure why this is being marketed to tweens. There is much more graphic violence than in the Eclipse books, for example.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 12 and 12 year old Written bytracylynh March 1, 2011

Just wish there was a 3rd book!

My daughter is so upset that she only has 20 or so pages til the end of the book. She LOVED this series.
Adult Written byJinOhio November 18, 2010
As an adult, I was obsessed with this series, which my 11 year old read and insisted I read, too. It is riveting and extremely thought-provoking and intelligent! As for age appropriateness, it is definitely very violent and grim. My daughter is more scared than average for movie watching, but was not affected by these books. I think this is up there with some of the classic dystopian novels I remember reading long ago when i was in 7th grade... Brave New World, Animal Farm, Lord of the Flies. What is wonderful about it? Aside from being a really good story you can't put down... I am THRILLED to have a female hero who is really not at all focused on romance, though the reader is wondering throughout the trilogy if she will end up with Gale or Peeta. But Katniss "knows" early on that she doesn't want to marry, and she spends zero time mooning over boys. It is the boys who are interested in her! The references to Roman times add to the depth of the novel. I found myself thining about places like North Korea today -- this novel made me realize how incredibly difficult it is for a people to throw off a powerful, totalitarian government. It also portrays realistic responses to humans exposed to torture and war... they all have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. What's neat is we meet Haymitch and initially see him as a drunk and are judgemental of him... Once we are initiated to the Games, we realize he is suffering the inevitable consequences of having survived them. I found Katniss' decision to assassinate Coin to also be extremely surprising and brilliant and made me really think! Katniss was right, but I would not have been as smart as her. And one can have great discussions about: can one person be judge, jury and executioner? What if the person they are killing will otherwise become an evil dictator who kills children? While my 11 year old read and loved it, I think this book is better for teens and adults who want to intellectualize away! And unlike some other reviewers who were disappointed, please re-read Katniss' explanation of why she NEEDS Peeta and not Gale in the end.. Gale represents anger... the anger necessary for a successful revolution Peeta represents hope and rebirth, which is necessary for survival and carrying forward.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 10 and 13 year old Written byV1 May 14, 2012

Too many adult themes - not for kids under 15

After reading the series I'm shocked to see kids as young as 9 reading these books. These books are age-inappropriate for most kids under 15. For example, book 2 refers to a character who preys on desperate women who line up outside his door to sell their bodies. Book 3 has a passing reference to incest and sexual deviance. In Book 2 the main character gets drunk and vomits. Other characters are alcoholics or drug addicts. Violence abounds. People get shot in the head with little provocation. Whole populations are wiped out in fire bombing and bloody war/rebellion. Characters trip over decomposing rotting bodies. Physical and psychological torture abounds. IMHO This is not stuff a 9 or 10 year old should be reading. The books are well written, especially book 3, but make them wait till they are 14+.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Parent Written byAllieO1234 June 8, 2011

Horrible ending to a great series.

I loved the first two books, this one doesn't even feel the same. Unfortunately the main character spends most of the book injured, on drugs, hiding in corners or just unable to deal with reality. They've taken a character that could have been a leader and turned her into a self absorbed fool. No roll model here. A real disappointment.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written bykaetra October 8, 2014

Way too muchGore, not for kids.

As with the rest of this series there is no shortage of young children being hurt and killed in horrible and gory ways. This book describes toddlers being maimed and killed with explosives. There is no way this book is appropriate for any child to read. Teens would probably be ok. My daughter's classmates were reading this in 5th grade. After reading it myself I can't believe this series would be considered ok by anyone for a 10 year old.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Parent of a 16 year old Written bykk-bob October 4, 2010
Love it Love it Love it Love it Love it
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Parent Written byParthena November 2, 2012

Suicidal Themes - Not for Depressed Teens or Adults

All 3 books were all very well written, although 'Mockingjay' should not be read by anyone who has or is suffering with depression as it deals with heavy suicidal themes, immense guilt, and some morphine addiction. Parents - please read each book all the way through before letting your child do so. Although I loved the first 2 books, I was very disappointed with 'Mockingjay' due to it's overall depressing message. The last 2 pages and epilogue were ok. Honestly, if you want to know what happens to the main characters just read those last few pages. I wouldn't want ANYONE who is depressed or has been through depression to read this novel. Other than that it gives a fair and honest description of war and what it can do to people.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byNeverOddOrEven December 23, 2010
I thought the first book would be OK for the middle schoolers I taught, but by the time I got to this one, I wouldn't be recommending the series to students unless they were in high school. Pimping the victors seemed like a little much for younger than high school. The issues it raises (the effect of power, how far is too far for a cause, the effects of war on soldiers and survivors, what is justifiable in a war, etc.) would certainly make for interesting and meaningful discussions with older students.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 3, 6, 9, and 11 year old Written byGardenMama September 30, 2010

A Little Too Mature for Under 14 to Really Understand

I personally loved this book (heck, I love the whole series), but I won't let my tween daughter read it until she's a little bit older. I think the content and issues are a little over her head at the moment. Probably kids 14+ will understand the issues and not be too shocked or disturbed by the violence. The best thing about the Hunger Games series are the characters. The main character, Katniss, seems very realistic to me in her reactions and thoughts. I really enjoyed reading about the choices she made and how she kind of gets swept along on this adventure. Definitely an original take on the futuristic society theme. My husband even enjoyed these books. Love, love, love this series!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written byKrazyKristen June 12, 2011

Mockingjay: Disapointment

If I was dissapointed with the second book, then I wanted to go home and cry in my pillow when i finished the third and final book of the series. Katniss was not as much of a strong heroine as she was in the first, and even second book. She was depressed, sick, and had no pattern to her emotions. She might have had a few moments, but they were overode by the bad moments. Also, I was shocked that Suzanne Collins killed almost every major charector off, leaving about 3 of the 14+ main charectors alive. Gale dissapeared entirely after he was kidnapped and Katniss failed to shoot him like they agreed they would if one of them ever was captured. Katniss is driven mad, and Peeta is left to clean up the mess, but I suppose love will do crazy things to you. By the time I was done with Mocingjay, I wanted to run around in circles, screaming and pulling my hair out. Hunger Games was AWESOME, Catching Fire was Good But Not Great, and I cannot even say what Mockingjay was.
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much violence
Adult Written byliliaeth January 2, 2011
This book shows the brutality of war, and how propaganda in the media can be used as a weapon. We are shown genuine consequences of the horror that Katniss and the others have been through. Showing that even though on occasion violence may be necessary, but that it is nor something to be taken on lightly and that any harm done to others, hurts the person causing said harm as much as the one it's done to. .
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written byerin s August 26, 2010

For Young Adults, not MIddle-Schoolers

I don't agree with the "on for 12+" rating. The books in this trilogy are thought-provoking, intelligently conceived, and real page-turners, but they're also about children who are forced to participate in a twisted reality television show where they must kill each other in extremely brutal ways for the entertainment of the masses. This is not a concept that any kid under high school age can or should wrap their head around, however intelligent or mature the kid might be. Middle schoolers used to horror-movie or video-game violence may not be as disturbed by the violence in these books as they should be. High schoolers and adults have enough life experience to get the true horror of this concept and understand the author's message. For younger kids, these books will seem like nothing more than extra-violent thrill rides, and that's just a waste of an excellent trilogy.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written bydarthsitkur August 20, 2012

better than the first two books

this was the expendables, Rambo 4, and planet terror all rolled up into one, the action never stopped, there were big explosions left and right, it was war based, and it had monsters and TONS of VERY extreme gore, when mockingjay parts 1 and 2 come out in the theater, i REEEEEALY hope that they're both Rated R
Parent Written bymommy02152 September 17, 2010

Consuming and Exciting...A great read

This was an amazing trilogy - my oldest (13) devoured the series and encouraged me to read as well. Anytime mom and daughter can read and discuss books is a positive bonding experience.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Parent of a 6 and 10 year old Written byPastor Dad September 13, 2010

More than Just a Good Story

This whole series, and especially this book, moves beyond simply telling a good tale to making the reader think. When is war justified? Are we, in our wealth, at all like the oppressive Capitol, as we send soldiers off to fight? Do the trivialities of entertainment keep us from recognizing the great needs of the world around us? The fact that these books wrestle with these questions, while also keeping us enthralled with a gripping story, makes this series quite worthwhile for parents and teens alike.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Educator and Parent Written bynonnaa October 25, 2014

Depressive impression, contains a lot of extremely violent scenes.

All three books are written in a very dynamic manner, makes the reader with a passion follow the plot. The main character seem attractive and positive. Overall, however, the story leaves a depressive impression, contains a lot of extremely violent scenes that could potentially negative impact on the child's psyche. Also there is sexual content, that may be appropriate for audiences over 13-14.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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