Booksellers Prepare to Celebrate Mockingjay [4]

Bookstores around the country will be open late on Monday night for customers who can't wait to get their hands on Mockingjay, the third book in Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy.

Booksellers and volunteers try out their own version of the Hunger Games at Magic Tree Bookstore.

Although Mockingjay is published as a young adult book, plenty of the trilogy's fans are well beyond their teen years. With that in mind, WORD Bookstore [6] in Brooklyn is catering to that crowd with an adults-only midnight party. “Most of our YA is sold to adults,” said WORD manager Stephanie Anderson.

With attendance limited to those of legal drinking age, WORD's customers will be able to sample the preferred beverage of one of the book's secondary characters. “We're in discussions right now about what exactly a Haymitch cocktail would look like,” said Anderson. Refreshments will also include fresh bread and berries, and customers can compete in Nerf archery and Katniss-lookalike contests.

The party-goers will be younger at the Book Stop [7] in Hood River, Oregon, but they won't be leaving the store until morning. “We are doing a ‘Not-Sleepover’ after the release, similar to the one we did for Breaking Dawn,” said Book Stop owner Cynthia Christensen. “We invite up to 36 girls to sleep all night in the bookstore, although most will spend the time reading the entire book.” The store will keep the girls occupied with activities when they take a break from their books, and parents will reclaim their daughters after breakfast.

At Red Fox Books [8] in Glens Falls, New York, bookseller Michelle Galo has worked with a local teacher and several teen Hunger Games fans to create a game based on the books. “Each player draws a card that designates a particular skill, like 'Survivalist' or 'Trailblazer.' They receive base points, and then can add to those points by visiting four ‘zones’ and taking part in contests in those zones, i.e. in the Forest, they take part in a trivia contest and can build on their Knowledge points,” said Red Fox co-owner Susan Fox.

“There's a Nerf archery contest, and a luck contest as well,” Fox added. “Participants can trade items, like a sleeping bag for a knife, which will also allow them to build points. They can also challenge each other to show their cards; the ‘loser’ has to leave the game. The winner is the last person left, or the person with the most points come midnight!”

Magic Tree Books [9] in Oak Park, Illinois, has also designed a game "with a life-size board," said store co-owner Iris Yipp. "We're recreating the whole Hunger Games world in the hall behind our store." Customers who want to grab a bite before picking up their copies of Mockingjay can go next door to Winberie's, where the chef has prepared a " Hunger Games-inspired menu" of fish, meat, and vegetable dishes based on foods from the series.

Boulder Book Store [10] is waiting for the afternoon of August 24 to celebrate. The store's party will run from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. “We got a couple of local businesses to co-sponsor and offer prizes, mostly gift cards. We'll have food and drinks, including specially designed Mockingjay cupcakes from a local shop, Tee & Cakes,” said marketing and promotions manager Mandy King.

“As for games,” said King, “we plan on having multiple stations throughout our ballroom with different Hunger Games-themed challenges: a Nerf archery station, an identify edible plants station, a Cinna dress designing station, a trivia station.”