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The mood of Mockingjay is almost overwhelmingly dark and foreboding. You know that something terrible is going to happen. Yet at the same time, there is a glimmer of optimism and hope.
Mood is the emotional landscape of the story. It is how you feel when you read it. Mood is created by the author’s choice of words, and the plot and setting.
The mood of Mockingjay can be described with many synonyms for gloomy: dark, depressing, morose, and miserable come to mind. The setting is mostly the underground shelter of District 13 or the battlefield. There is war, death, and destruction everywhere. Things have gone from bad in The Hunger Games to worse in Catching Fire, and are now at the climax. Consider the opening lines in the second paragraph.
Almost nothing remains of District 12. A month ago, the Capitol’s firebombs obliterated the poor coal miners’ houses in the Seam, the shops in the town, even the Justice Building. (p. 3)
We begin with a scene of destruction. Katniss’s people have been killed, and her old home destroyed. However, in this destruction is the opportunity for rebirth. District 12 was terrible, and its annihilation can be the beginning of something new.
There is also a mood of anticipation and suspense in this, the final book of the series. We know that something has to happen, it has to end somehow. Suspense is strong in this book.
Katniss’s eyes are certainly opened in District 13. She begins to suspect that Coin and the revolutionaries are not good people either. They believe that they can get what they want with any means necessary, including using tactics that Katniss disagrees with. Soon, the mood becomes more hopeful. The Epilogue describes Katniss and Peeta’s children.
They play in the Meadow. The dancing girl with the dark hair and blue eyes. The boy with blond curls and gray eyes, struggling to keep up with her on his chubby toddler legs. (p. 389).
In the end, good comes from bad. Peace comes from chaos. Hope from despair. This is the mood of Mockingjay.
Collins, Suzanne (2010-08-24). Mockingjay (The Final Book of The Hunger Games) (Scholastic Books. Kindle Edition.
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