OurBookClub


Mockingjay
Catching Fire
The Hunger Games

Mockingjay by Suzanne CollinsBook Cover of Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Young Katniss Everdeen has survived the dreaded Hunger Games not once, but twice, but even now she can find no relief. In fact, the dangers seem to be escalating. President Snow has declared an all-out war on Kattnis, her family, her friends, and all the oppressed people of District 12. The thrill-packed final installment of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy will keep young hearts pounding. (From Barnes & Noble.) . Click here to read the full review.


1. What is Katniss’s greatest challenge when she returns to see the ruins of her home? What is the meaning of the rose she finds on her dresser? Why does she keep repeating facts about herself?
2. Why does Katniss take the cat Buttercup back to District 13? What role does Buttercup play in the story in later chapters?
3. What is the first reaction Katniss has to the people of District 13? What makes her say, “In some ways District 13 is even more controlling than the Capitol”?
4. What influences her decision to become the Mockingjay? Why does Katniss have to ask for conditions once she agrees to take on the role of Mockingjay?
5. Discuss the feelings between Katniss and Coin. Why do they distrust each other from the beginning? How does Coin treat the conditions that Katniss demands for being the Mockingjay? Is Katniss really a threat to Coin’s power?
6. Compare the reactions of Katniss and Gale to the imprisonment and treatment of Katniss’s prep team, Venia, Octavia, and Flavius. How does this reflect on both of them? What is the difference between the prep team and the filming crew—Cressida, Mesalla, Castor, and Pollux—who are also from the Capitol?
7. What was necessary for Katniss to create a truly effective “propo” for the rebellion? Why didn’t the first idea work? Why does Haymitch say, “That is how a revolution dies”? After the taping in District 8, what does Katniss mean when she says, “I have a kind of power I never knew I possessed”?
8. Discuss the role of television “propaganda” in today’s society and the techniques that are used to influence our thinking. How do these techniques compare to those used by the Capitol and the rebels in Mockingjay?
9. Why did Plutarch cover up Katniss and Gale’s insubordination in District 8 during the taping? What is the effect of the “propo” on the rebellion in other districts? Why are the “propos” so vital to the rebellion? What effect do Katniss and the Mockingjay symbolism have on those fighting against the Capitol and those in the Capitol?
10. Discuss the role of music in this book. What is the significance of the “Hanging Tree” song? How many ways does the song play a part in the story? How does it connect Katniss and Peeta to their past and their future? Research the song “Strange Fruit” sung by Billie Holiday and discuss its aimilarities and differences to Katniss’s song.
11. Discuss the changing nature of the relationship between Katniss and Gale. What does Gale say is the“only way I get your attention”? Did Katniss ever love Gale the way he wants her to love him? Does he truly love her?
12. Discuss the changing nature of Prim’s role in the story, as she grows older. Identify times when Prim helps Katniss when no one else can.
13. Why do the rebels decide to rescue Peeta? Discuss the effects of the “hijacking” of Peeta’s brain. Discuss Katniss’s comment, “It’s only now that he’s been corrupted that I can fully appreciate the real Peeta.” What is the significance of the pearl she keeps?
14. Why are Finnick and Johanna important to Katniss? Discuss her relationship to each of them and how they help her prepare for the final fight. What is the effect of Finnick’s “propo” about his treatment by President Snow?
15. When Katniss learns of the work Gale is doing with Beetee, using the psychology of trapping as much as the mechanics, she says to Gale, “Seems to be crossing some kind of line.” Gale’s reply is that they are “following the same rule book President Snow used.” Do the ends in this battle justify the means, as Gale seems to imply?
16. Why is it so hard for Katniss to accept Gale’s idea for trapping the workers inside the Nut (“I can’t condemn someone to the death he’s suggesting”)? What does she mean when she says to the wounded man in the square, “I’m tired of being a piece in their Games”? How many ways does the invasion of the Capitol remind Katniss of the Games?
17. Discuss Katniss’s feelings of guilt and insecurity when confronting Peeta. What makes her say, “Finally, he can see me for who I really am. Violent. Distrustful. Manipulative. Deadly”? What makes her think the worst of herself?
18. What are Coin’s motives in ordering Peeta to join Katniss’s squad in the Capitol? What are the advantages and disadvantages of having him on the squad? When Boggs transfers the holo to Katniss, why does he say, “Don’t trust them”? Whom does he mean?
19. Do you believe it was the rebels who killed the children with the exploding parachutes? If so, how does that make you feel about whether this was justified as a means of winning the war?
20. Why does Paylor allow Katniss to enter the rooms where Snow is being held? Does she know that Snow will reveal to Katniss the role of the rebels in Prim’s death? Did Snow tell Katniss the truth?
21. Why did Katniss vote for another Hunger Games? To save the lives of more people? Or did she secretly anticipate sabotaging the plan?
22. Why does Katniss assassinate Coin? Does she do it to avenge Prim, or because she believes it is for the greater good of the country, or both? How does Katniss escape retribution for Coin’s death?
23. Gale tells Peeta, when they are hiding out in the Capitol, that Katniss will pick whichever one of them she can’t survive without. In the end, why is that one Peeta and not Gale?

These questions are provided by the Publisher.

Buy Now

Back to top


Catching Fire by Suzanne CollinsBook Cover of Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. (From the publisher.) Click here to read the full review.


1. How did Katniss’s participation in the Games change her relationship with Gale? Why does she say, “The Games have spoiled even that…There’s no going back.”
2. What emotions does Peeta stir in Katniss? Though she is stiff and formal with him, what are her true feelings? How did the events in the first Games affect their relationship?
3. Why does President Snow come to Katniss’s home? What does he mean when he says, “you have provided a spark which left unattended may grow into an inferno....” What, exactly, was the significance of the handful of poisonous berries at the end of The Hunger Games?
4. How do the events of the Victory Tour affect Katniss and Peeta, their relationship to each other, and their feelings about their future?
5. Why does the Capitol devise a special reaping procedure for every 25th Game? Do you believe the requirements for this Quarter Quell were decided in the past or were they designed for this Game to force Katniss and Peeta back to the Arena?
6. What is the significance of the mockingjay image? What does it mean to the people in the Districts and the people in the Capitol? Why does Plutarch Heavensbee show Katniss the hidden mockingjay image on his watch? Discuss how the mockingjay species developed and how Katniss happened to wear the pin during the first Games.
7. Why does Gale refuse Katniss’s offer to try to escape into the wild? What does he mean when he says, “It can’t be about just saving us anymore”? How does Gale’s whipping change Katniss’s thinking about escape and her feelings for Gale?
8. What makes Katniss say, “No wonder I won the Games. No decent person ever does.” Is she being too hard on herself? What makes her realize that fighting the Capitol is more important than running away? What is the importance of her meeting with Bonnie and Twill in the forest?
9. Why does the Capitol push plans for the wedding of Katniss and Peeta if they know that they will be returning to the Games in the Quarter Quell? What does the Capitol hope to gain by sending previous victors back to the Games? Is it really, as Katniss says, a way to show “that hope was an illusion”?
10. What do Katniss and Peeta learn when they watch the video of Haymitch’s Hunger Games, the 2nd Quarter Quell? How does it affect their understanding of Haymitch and the mockingjay symbol? How did Haymitch trick the Capitol?
11. How do both Peeta and Katniss mock the Gamemakers during the “talent show” portion of the training? Why do they each take the chance of offending those who will control the Games? How does this change their feelings for each other?
12. Discuss the effect on Katniss of what happens to Darius and Cinna. Why are the Capitol officials attacking those who have befriended her? Why is Cinna attacked just before Katniss is placed in the Arena?
13. Why is Katniss determined to keep Peeta alive during the Games, even at the expense of her own life? When does she realize the importance of forming alliances with the other tributes? Why does Finnick save Peeta’s life? When does Katniss realize that her first impression of Finnick was wrong?
14. What is the meaning of the title? How many different ways can you identify the theme of “catching fire” in this volume?

These questions are provided by Scholastic's Teacher Book Wizard.

Buy Now

Back to top


The Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsBook Cover of The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, "The Hunger Games." The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When Kat's sister is chosen by lottery, Kat steps up to go in her place. (From the publisher). Click here to read the full review.


1. How does Katniss feel about the country of Panem? Why does she need to make her face "an indifferent mask" and be careful what she says in public?
2. Describe the relationships of Katniss with Gale, with Prim, with her mother. How do those relationships define her personality? Why does she say about Peeta, "I feel like I owe him something, and I hate owing people." How does her early encounter with Peeta affect their relationship after they are chosen as tributes?
3. How does the fact that the tributes are always on camera affect their behavior from the time they are chosen? Does it make it easier or harder for them to accept their fate? How are the "career tributes" different from the others?
4. Why are the "tributes" given stylists and dressed so elaborately for the opening ceremony? Does this ceremony remind you of events in our world, either past or present? Compare those ceremonies in real life to the one in the story.
5. When Peeta declares his love for Katniss in the interview, does he really mean it or did Haymitch create the "star-crossed lovers" story? What does Haymitch mean when he says, "It's all a big show. It's all how you're perceived." Why do they need to impress sponsors and what are those sponsors looking for when they are watching the Games?
6. Before the Games start, Peeta tells Katniss, "...I want to die as myself ... I don't want them to change me in there. Turn me into some kind of monster that I'm not." What does this tell you about Peeta? What does he fear more than death? Is he able to stay true to himself during the Games?
7. Why does Katniss ignore Haymitch's advice to head directly away from the Cornucopia? Did she do the right thing to fight for equipment? What are the most important skills she has for staying alive — her knowledge of nature? — her skill with bow and arrow? — her trapping ability? What qualities of her personality keep her going - her capacity for love? — her intelligence? — her self-control?
8. Why does Peeta join with the Career Tributes in the beginning of the Games? What does he hope to gain? Why do they accept him when they start hunting as a group? Why do groups form in the beginning when they know only one of them will be able to survive?
9. What makes Katniss and Rue trust each other to become partners? What does Katniss gain from this friendship besides companionship? Is Katniss and Rue's partnership formed for different reasons than the other group's?
10. Discuss the ways in which the Gamemakers control the environment and "entertainment" value of the Games. How does it affect the tributes to know they are being manipulated to make the Games more exciting for the gamblers and viewers? Does knowing that she is on live TV make Katniss behave differently than she would otherwise?
11. When does Katniss first realize that Peeta does care for her and is trying to keep her alive? When does she realize her own feelings for him? Did Haymitch think all along that he could keep them both alive by stressing the love story? Are they actually in love?
12. What do you think is the cruelest part of the Hunger Games? What kind of people would devise this spectacle for the entertainment of their populace? Can you see parallels between these Games and the society that condones them, and other related events and cultures in the history of the world?
13. In 1848, Karl Marx wrote in The Communist Manifesto, "The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles." Discuss this statement as it applies to the society and government of Panem. Do you believe there is any chance to eradicate class struggles in the future?
14. Reality TV has been a part of the entertainment world since the early days of television (with shows such as Candid Camera and the Miss America Pageant), but in the 21st century there has been a tremendous growth of competitive shows and survival shows. Discuss this phenomenon with respect to The Hunger Games. What other aspects of our popular culture do you see reflected in this story?

These questions are provided by Scholastic's Teacher Book Wizard.

Buy Now

Back to top