Welcome to Mockingjay Rethink

November 3, 2010

This blog is dedicated to a single purpose: to offer an alternate ending to Suzanne Collins’s amazing and insightful Hunger Games trilogy. For more about why I have offered this ending, refer to the right column where I explain what I am trying to accomplish.

Otherwise, be forewarned, this alternate ending is only interesting (and hopefully valuable) to you if you have read the original book(s). It not only contains spoilers, it completely alters them! Please leave your comments here or on my Mockingjay review on Goodreads if you want to be part of the discussion.


12 Responses to “Welcome to Mockingjay Rethink”

  1. alice gold Says:

    I can’t wait to sit and read this all. I really hope that you solved Colins’ crime of never offering closure on the pearl. Shame.

  2. Andrea Says:

    Thanks for writing this. It definitely was satisfying to read.

    Here’s my question… Is there any way Katniss could have accomplished what she did politically without murdering Coin? It’s hard to admire her for doing something fundamentally wrong….even though I understand that Coin was a huge threat. It’s just that every other time Katniss had to kill someone it felt more like self-defense. I felt like it was hard to look up to Katniss after that. You did a great job showing that the end may justify the means in this situation. I was just disappointed a bit with Katniss that it had to be that way.

    Plus, I wonder how Peeta would have felt about that because he always did what was morally right.

    • Jason Wegeleben Says:

      It wasn’t that Coin was just a huge threat it was that she realized what coin had did… coin ordered the killing of the children including Prim whom could only have been there at Coin’s order (just as peeta shouldn’t have been in the capital at that point but coin had sent him so he would go berserk and kill katniss, which he almost did).. and she was already going to kill snow for his crimes but had to make a choice…. use her 1 arrow to execute someone that has been stripped of all power and that everyone knows is evil and going to die anyway or to execute someone who just gained all power and very few know or even suspect is evil who would be able to cover their tracks if let live…she chose to execute the person for crimes they committed & to ensure future crimes would not be committed rather than just kill the person who could no longer affect the future.. remember at that point she was an executioner… She just chose which one would be the most beneficial to execute with her single arrow…

  3. James McQuivey Says:


    Great, great question. I had a bit of a tough choice to make here — stick with the murder of Coin (Collins’ choice), or rewrite the whole thing to create a different ending. I chose to keep her ending, but just change the character.

    This was probably because, though I understand where you’re coming from, the Greek dramatist in me felt like killing Coin was appropriate. There had to be a final sacrifice, a murder to end all murder. In fact, this was what Coin herself had suggested the final Hunger Games would be (which I feel opened her up to be the actual final sacrifice, she opened the door to that solution, if you will). But I also felt like the only way Katniss could absolve the people of all the murders they had committed was to take the guilt of the people on her own shoulders by becoming the final monster herself. If you re-read the first pages of my ending, I hope I made it clear that she knew she was making of herself an atrocity, but with the hope that by committing a final atrocity, she could end all atrocity. Which is, by the way, why she knew it was possible Peeta would never forgive her. All the more reason she kept him close, hoping that his core love for her would override that sense in him.

    Clearly it’s not a real world solution and maybe Collins’ original approach — make Katniss seem crazy so we can justify her murderous action and then just accept that there’s no way to end war and murder and be okay with that — is more realistic. But I didn’t want realistic. I wanted a way for Katniss to overcome, not just endure.

    Anyway, if that explains where I’m coming from, then good, but I still think your point stands.

  4. Amber Says:

    This was a more satisfying ending!! I love that she became president and that her relationship with Peeta was clearly made whole again. Brilliant!
    The only thing I would like to see is a tiny bit of emotional scarring from the war and the loved ones she lost. I think that if anyone went through what she went through, they would definitely have a bit of an emotional scar. She probably wouldn’t be as strong as she is portrayed here because of what she went through. But I like that Katniss isn’t just enduring her pain! Also, I really miss the “But there are much worse games to play” line. That was my favorite line of the series! You should consider adding it the the end somehow!

  5. Adriana Says:

    This was an excellent ending! I really, really enjoyed reading it. Thank you so much for writing it. I will pretend this is how it really ended. The whole time I was readinfg the last book, I kept thinking Katniss will take the lead and be president. I guess I wanted a hero., but when she ended up where Collins put her, I was very, very much dissapointed. Honestly they should re-write the ending completely, and put this ending in the actual book. Thank you for your ending, I will now go away from these books a much happier and satisfied reader.

    • James McQuivey Says:

      Thank you, Adriana. It’s very kind of you to take the time to say that. It has been nearly two years since I re-wrote the ending for Mockingjay an I am glad it still helps people this many years on.

  6. Since finishing the book last night i have been tortured by the end of the story. I cant begin to tell you how bleak, hopeless, sad, depressed, angry, hurt, emotional, confused, and mad i felt upon reading the end. As the final page count began to dwindle down i started to panic, wondering if things would get better, if they could get better. As i turned and turned my hope died a little with each line. By the time i read the epilogue i too felt broken. I searched for reviews of the book, explanations by the author, and then finally alternative endings to the book.

    Im very thankful i stumbled upon your alternative ending, because it gives me some comfort in the wake of what i read. Even though the series was only a short three books, it still touched me, and the characters still touched me, and the ending scarred me. You know that feeling when you go to take that last sip of soda, and nothing but a drizzle comes out on your tongue, you try to swallow, but there’s nothing in your mouth, just a faint reminder of the taste on your tongue. Empty. Thats a lot like what the ending felt like when i read it. As a female, a fate of misery, trauma, mediocre relationships, and then forced children with very little joy or spirit seems to be a fate worse than death. I hate to say this, but i would rather she have died the girl on fire, than for the ending to be carried out the way it was with so little spirit. Im thankful you added in a president Gale, so i know they kept in touch, and invited Haymitch to dinner, because for all i know in the original book he is dead in a pile of vomit somewhere. It was painful to read, and im glad you took the time to explain her reasoning and make some of it right. It was well written and it gives me some peace tonight. I will look for your book on amazon. If you have any other recommendations id be glad to hear them.

  7. Philip Stuyck Says:

    You are quite positive on all 3 books. I am very pleased with the first two, but I think that the third is just not right and there are still a lot of things that just don’t fit.
    The very existance of district 13, though I believe it is possible, can never be a solution to the problem. Why ? Because both the capital and district 13 have nuclear power and the initial agreemant between them still stands. With this nuclear arsenal that the capitol has makes it actually totally impossible to have a successfull rebellion from the 12 districts too. If thinks go really bad, the capitol just has to throw a nuke at anyone district and it would be finished. In fact it can not actually ever get that ugly. The overwhelming power of the capitol is just too clear.
    There is only one path that I can think of is imaginable here, and that is a rebellion from within the capitol, inspired by the actions of Katniss the second time in the ring. Whoever pulls here out of the ring should not have been district 13 at all but some kind of faction of the capitol who finally begin to see that the hunger games are wrong. There is such a faction anyway, but they are to much relying on district 13. Walking down this path is more believable to me as it would explain not to use any nuclear weapons at all.
    I also had a problem with Katnis emotional stability, how many times is she thrown from one side of the spectrum to the other ? I lost count.
    And the loose ends:
    How do you explain the children being there to so called protect the president with a human shield ? Or were they placed there by the rebels ? If you are in front of the presidency you have won the war, there is no point in killing the children by the rebellions for sure not if you plan to keep the capitol at its knees after the war is won with another hunger games with their children. As I said I don’t beleeve this path to be viable anyway because of the nuclear power. There cannot be any rebellion steered from district 13.
    What is the point of the mission that Katnis undertakes ?
    A capital that is completely booby trapped ?
    No for me the only way out is the people of the capitol to turn on their own president.
    I liked the film, and the second one I am going to see for sure, but I am not sure of the third, perhaps I will because Jennifer Lawrence is so good at portraying Katnis, maybe she can convince me of the original ending. If she can, then she would be truly a great actress.

  8. Alyssa cislo Says:

    I like the ending you made but it is a little predictable. I thought the ending of Suzanne Collins series was harsh but thought it showed how after tragedies most cannot completely recover. It shows how while not completely recovered she can move on but always carries the same hate and evilness that has been done to her.

  9. Andrea Says:

    Thank you for writing this. Like the other readers, I felt so let down by the story and the ending given by Collins. It just didn’t do any of the characters, or the epic nature of the story itself, justice. I don’t need a happy ending tied up with a bow, but it needs to make sense, and, selfishly, when I get as involved as I am with these types of characters I need some form of closure and satisfaction. Now that I’ve stumbled on this I am going to pretend it’s the end and hope like crazy they take at least some of your ideas for the movie! Great job

  10. shana Says:

    I am so glad that I came across your work. The ending given by Collins was certainly not what I was looking forward to. But then searching for explanations on ending of this book, I stumbled on your work and now I feel much much better 🙂 thank you again

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