Catching Fire: Book Review

Since I wrote a book review for The Hunger Games, I decided to add the next installment. Now that the movie is out, I’ve been thinking about the story.

catching fire coverCatching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2), by Suzanne Collins, Scholastic Press, September 1, 2009. 391 pages

Katniss and Peeta are sent to each District to show solidarity with President Snow. Their rule breaking at the end of The Hunger Games caused others around the Districts to rebel as well. Trouble happens when they appear at District 11. The home of Rue, the little girl Katniss teamed up with during the Games. There an act of rebellion happens and the results shock and disturb Katniss.

Later on their journey around the Districts and the Capitol they give an interview with a surprise announcement. They hoped it would curb the rebellion, but have little success.

After her return home, Katniss encounters runaways who explain a theory about the elusive District 13. They believe it is occupied by people unhappy with the Capitol and the Districts. Katniss wonders about their revelation, but mostly dismisses it as fanciful.

The efforts of President Snow resulted in little influence so he announces another Hunger Games. The 75th Hunger Games, or the Quarter Quell. For the anniversary special instructions are given that pertain to the contestants. It’s revealed that 24 previous winners would have to enter the games. They hold the same type of lottery with previous contestant who have their names drawn. Katniss and Peeta are chosen along with 22 other previous winners.

The Games are in a new setting and have new challenges. The unexpected ending opens the way to the third installment and the conclusion.

My thoughts on the book:

We delve more into the relationship of Katniss and Peeta and wonder about Gale and if he might ever get his chance with her.

This book stayed as action packed as the first book and I read it with a quick pace. The game winner participation is a twist that I enjoyed. It gave a new perspective for strategy and ability. Everyone understood the rules, so the entire experience of reading this story seemed new and exciting.

The ending comes out of nowhere, but is still relevant and serves a purpose for the plot.

I had a few issues with this story. The 75th annual game seemed odd. For such an important anniversary we received little notice of its approach. I also wanted more in terms of Katniss’ relationships. She came off as distant to everyone and though she is close with Peeta, it still seemed underdeveloped.

catching fire movie coverSince the story intrigued me I overlooked those small issues. I delighted in reading the characters I cared about. An overall good read.

I look forward to seeing the movie and seeing how close it stays to the book.

I would love to discuss with you about this and I love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading my blog.
A.G. Zalens

 

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