Finally got my hands on a copy of Mockingjay. For those not in the know, Mockingjay is the third in a dystopian trilogy for teens. I’ve been waiting for this book for ages, but only just now got a copy to read since I was too cheap to pre-order it.
While I waited I read every teen dystopian novel I could find. Birthmarked by Caragh O’Brien was very engaging, but I didn’t feel like the world completely gelled for me. Matched by Allison Condie, however, was spot on. The dystopian world was well drawn and believable. There is less action than Hunger Games, but I think that many teens (and probably some adults) who were fascinated by the future world Katniss lives in will love Matched.
At the MEMO conference, I attended a session led by three middle and high school librarians about teen fiction. They recommended Maze Runner and its sequel as Hunger Games readalikes. I liked that they recommended two adult novels in the science fiction section: Margaret Atwood’s newest and The Unit by Nina Holmquist. I hope to read both of them. I also have an ARC of the teen novel Water Wars (pub date Jan 2011) sitting on my desk waiting for me to read.
At breakfast with a group of my friends last weekend, the conversation turned to books. Dystopian novels, specifically Fahrenheit 451 and 1984, came up as being favorites of several of us at the table. What is it about these books that fascinate so many people? Are we looking for similarities to our world? Or escaping our reality to something we can’t imagine? I guess it depends on the person and the book. Either way, it’s a highly readable genre that is perennially popular.