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Книга Mockingjay. Содержание - EPILOGUE

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They play in the Meadow. The dancing girl with the dark hair and blue eyes. The boy with blond curls and gray eyes, struggling to keep up with her on his chubby toddler legs. It took five, ten, fifteen years for me to agree. But Peeta wanted them so badly. When I first felt her stirring inside of me, I was consumed with a terror that felt as old as life itself. Only the joy of holding her in my arms could tame it. Carrying him was a little easier, but not much.

The questions are just beginning. The arenas have been completely destroyed, the memorials built, there are no more Hunger Games. But they teach about them at school, and the girl knows we played a role in them. The boy will know in a few years. How can I tell them about that world without frightening them to death? My children, who take the words of the song for granted:

Deep in the meadow, under the willow
A bed of grass, a soft green pillow
Lay down your head, and close your sleepy eyes
And when again they open, the sun will rise.
Here it’s safe, here it’s warm
Here the daisies guard you from every harm
Here your dreams are sweet and tomorrow brings them true
Here is the place where I love you.
My children, who don’t know they play on a graveyard.

Peeta says it will be okay. We have each other. And the book. We can make them understand in a way that will make them braver. But one day I’ll have to explain about my nightmares. Why they came. Why they won’t ever really go away.

I’ll tell them how I survive it. I’ll tell them that on bad mornings, it feels impossible to take pleasure in anything because I’m afraid it could be taken away. That’s when I make a list in my head of every act of goodness I’ve seen someone do. It’s like a game. Repetitive. Even a little tedious after more than twenty years.

But there are much worse games to play.



I would like to pay tribute to the following people who gave their time, talent, and support to The Hunger Games.

First off, I must thank my extraordinary triumvirate of editors. Kate Egan, whose insight, humor, and intelligence have guided me through eight novels; Jen Rees, whose clear vision catches the things the rest of us miss; and David Levithan, who moves so effortlessly through his multiple roles of Note Giver, Title Master, and Editorial Director.

Through rough drafts, food poisoning, every up and down, you are there with me, Rosemary Stimola, equal parts gifted creative advisor and professional guardian, my literary agent and my friend. And Jason Dravis, my longtime entertainment agent, I feel so lucky to have you watching over me as we head for the screen.

Thanks to designer Elizabeth B. Parisi and artist Tim O’Brien for the beautiful book jackets that so successfully captured both the mockingjays and people’s attention.

All hail the incredible team at Scholastic for getting The Hunger Games out into the world: Sheila Marie Everett, Tracy van Straaten, Rachel Coun, Leslie Garych, Adrienne Vrettos, Nick Martin, Jacky Harper, Lizette Serrano, Kathleen Donohoe, John Mason, Stephanie Nooney, Karyn Browne, Joy Simpkins, Jess White, Dick Robinson, Ellie Berger, Suzanne Murphy, Andrea Davis Pinkney, the entire Scholastic sales force, and the many others who have devoted so much energy, smarts, and savvy to this series.

To the five writer-friends I rely on most heavily, Richard Register, Mary Beth Bass, Christopher Santos, Peter Bakalian, and James Proimos, much gratitude for your advice, perspective, and laughter.

Special love to my late father, Michael Collins, who laid the groundwork for this series with his deep commitment to educating his children on war and peace, and my mother, Jane Collins, who introduced me to the Greeks, sci-fi, and fashion (although that last one didn’t stick); my sisters, Kathy and Joanie; my brother, Drew; my in-laws, Dixie and Charles Pryor; and the many members of my extended family whose enthusiasm and support have kept me going.

And finally, I turn to my husband, Cap Pryor, who readThe Hunger Games in its earliest draft, insisted on answers to questions I hadn’t even imagined, and remained my sounding board through the entire series. Thanks to him and my wonderful kids, Charlie and Isabel, for their daily love, their patience, and the joy they bring me.


SUZANNE COLLINS is the author of the bestselling Underland Chronicles series, which started with Gregor the Overlander . Her groundbreaking young adult novels,The Hunger Games andCatching Fire, were both New York Times bestsellers, received wide praise, and garnered numerous starred reviews.

Suzanne lives with her family in Connecticut. You can find her online at www.suzannecollinsbooks.com .

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