Carrie has four daughters and runs Write On! Workshops--a summer writing camp for children.

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If you know what this is:

You probably know what this means:

And also understand why I awoke at 2:30 in the morning to shrieks from my ten year old’s bedroom. Thirteen had finished Mockingjay and had to tell someone about it. To her joy, ten is an eager listener. Even if her thirteen year old sister wakes her up at 2:30 in the morning.

When I walked in the room, they both jumped. Were they seriously surprised someone else could hear them? Thirteen’s face was flushed and edging on tears. She honestly was borderline hysterical. Books can do that. I can’t carry her anymore, but I dragged her to her bedroom, checking for a fever. “Mom! I’m not sick!” As I forced her into bed, I almost had to gag her from spilling the ending. Her final words were, “I’m not tired.” Mine were, “Too bad.”

This morning she kept slipping little hints like, “I’m just going to tell you one thing that doesn’t have anything to do with the story.” I told her I don’t want to know. Not even one thing. Not even the color of Peeta’s shirt. Or what Katniss ate for breakfast. And especially not who she ends up with. Nothing.

But if I wait too long it will all slip out. My girls will discuss it in this sort of code language that is supposedly designed for my protection. But even if I plug my ears, clues will seep in and little by little I’ll think, “I was expecting this.” This happened so often with the Harry Potter series that I almost gave in and let her tell me whose side Snape was on. But I didn’t. I wanted to discover it for myself. Not like a reader traipsing over everyone elses’ tracks, but as if I am the first one ever to turn the page.

Knowing my children as I do, I better hurry.

It’s my turn.

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Comments (4)

  1. Natalie Gehl 08/31/2010 at 4:14 pm

    This is my house exactly! I had to proofread the series first–it's a little disturbing, you know. I approved and the kids were off like a shot! I added our name for Mockingjay to the library waiting list: #106 for 12 copies. Hmmm. That could be 6 months. Not good enough. Next thing I know, I bought all 3 at Amazon. They arrive tomorrow.

  2. Carriefinlinson 08/31/2010 at 10:34 pm

    I'm honestly amazed how quick those library waiting lists can move. But I don't blame you for buying them. It's like there are some movies you just can't save until they get to the dollar theatre. You have to go opening night.

  3. erinoltmanns 09/01/2010 at 8:53 pm

    I just finished it last night. Get going, so we can discuss! 🙂

  4. Jen Crozier 09/10/2010 at 1:30 am

    I want to read it!