The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins Review

“Nothing you can take from me was ever worth keeping.”

I was drawn in completely at the beginning. Of course we already know the Panem of the future, but this version of the Capitol still has rubble in the streets where the District 13 bombs hit. The citizens still remember the war and they are full of venom, full of bitterness. They still have their pride and now they have the power back. It was interesting seeing things from the Capitols point of view. I still didn’t sympathise with them because they disgust me. But a lot of people did object to the Hunger Games.

If starving to death was a natural cause. He wasn’t entirely sure. Was it natural if hunger had been used as a weapon?”

I loved Lucy Gray (Snow’s tribute) straight away, she is bold, sassy and wonderful. Snow is very clever and always eager to please but he still has compassion. I have no idea how it came about but I did start to feel sympathy for Snow. Despite knowing how he turns out, I found myself hoping that he would somehow not become the evil President of Katniss’ day.

We see the Hunger Games taking the shape of the ones we know. The spectacle, the show that the Capitol put on to subdue the Districts. It’s terrifying seeing all the horrible things that we know one day will harm countless children and make the whole event into a show rather than the slaughter that it is.

“If the people who were supposed to protect you played so fast and loose with your life…then how did you survive? Not by trusting them, that was for sure.

I loved all the little things that remind us of the original series. Like mentions of Mockingjays etc. The music that travelled down the generations, lullabies and nursery rhymes. Even some poems from before the apocalypse were made into songs by some citizens.

I didn’t want the book to end, because it was so brilliant and because I knew it must end in heartbreak somehow. Something must happen to Snow and I wasn’t in a rush to find out.

Truly an incredible read. Collins kept me on my toes the whole way through. Especially towards the end, I felt like I couldn’t dare to breathe. I am very emotional at the end of this book. The Coriolanus Snow we knew was cold, manipulative and evil. But we’re not born evil, and nor was he. If you like The Hunger Games series this is a must read.

“I think there’s a natural goodness built into human beings. You know when you’ve stepped across the line into evil, and it’s your life’s challenge to try and stay in the right side of that line.”

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