Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Mockingjay - too violent?

I finished Mockingjay last night. I've devoured all the books in The Hunger Games series, even though I've cringed at the violence and sadness of each one. Suzanne Collins is an amazing author, everything just feels so real as you read those books. But as I read them I realize I am a hypocrite. I saw nothing wrong with me reading the stories and visualizing the destruction, but my 12yo came home and told me read The Hunger Games at school. I was sick. I told him the books were far too violent and I didn't want him reading them. He just shrugged and said, "Okay, Mom." Am I being too protective? How do you keep your child's innocence and yet let them grow up? Okay, that's a weighted question but I'm referring to what they read not the whole scheme of things. And seriously, why don't they rate books so we can at least have a guidance system of some sort. My 12yo wouldn't think of watching a PG13 or R-rated movie, but I think some of the books he's read have been violent enough to be R.


  1. I dont think your 12yo sees it as you do. After years of being worn on by movies and tv you see it a certain way. If he hasnt been exposed to violence at a deep level then he isnt capable of imagining it at that level. I believe his view is far from the cringing violence you portray in your mind.

    Hope it helps

  2. I'm with you, Cami. Good questions. I won't let my girls won't read The Hunger Games series until they are closer to Katniss' age. My oldest DD just turned 13 and she is within about 20 pages of finishing Dracula. I remember reading it when I was about her age, and that it had some scary parts, but I don't remember specifics. As she read it she would recap the story for me and it seemed that she was handling it pretty well, but there were a couple of times I wondered if it was wise to let her read it right now.

    There is quite a difference between the judgement and coping capabilities of a 12 year old and a 30 year old. I think you are being a good mom in protecting your son's innocence for as long as you can. If he was 16 and said he had read it you probably wouldn't have reacted the way you did. The world will destroy what it can of his innocence soon enough. No need to rush it.

    Shanda :)

  3. I think it's important to talk about the things our kids are reading--and then give them the free agency to make their own choices, just as we do with everything else in life. I loved that about my parents. I never felt censured or the need to rebel b/c I got to make my own choices. It probably helped that I made good ones. :)

  4. Thanks. You all have given me wonderful advice. I didn't think about that Devin, that helps me relax a bit!
    Thanks, Shanda, I am definitely going to discuss with him what he reads more.
    Tamara - you are so right. My parents were the same, taught me their morals but gave me freedom so I could make my own choices. So hard for me to let him grow up!

  5. This is a tough series to recommend. I do, of course, because I was sucked into it just like everyone else. But every time I start to tell someone about it I feel like I'm disturbed. I'm telling them about a bunch of teenagers who are killing each other for sport, and why they should love it as much as I do? It feels wrong. But I enjoyed it non the less. My kids are only 2 and 3, so I have a few years still to figure out how to handle these things. Not that it will be any easier then! Good luck!!

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