Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

I am not sure how to even blog Catching Fire.  Short version, I think this is the best fiction book I have read this year.  I know I do not read as much fiction as non-fiction but this was still very good.

If you have not read Huger Games (my review) then DO NOT READ THIS REVIEW.

Katniss is now 17 years old.  She survived the hunger games and managed to keep Peeta alive as well.  Now she is confused, how does she deal with Gale and Peeta.  And President Snow is clearly threatening her family and those around her if she does not work to make sure that the rest of the country is not going to rebel against government and use her as their mascot.

I am not going to get into the longer plot details.  This is a book that you want to open slowly.

The strength of the book are the characters.  Katniss is not a ur-child.  The problem with Ender’s Game (and I love Ender’s Game) is that Ender was nearly perfect.  No one is real life is that perfect.  Katniss is skilled and a strong character, but she is not perfect.  She depends heavily on Peeta and others in the book to get her where she needs to go.

4 Comments

HECK YES! I am so glad to see others getting the word out there! I love these books; they are some of my faves. The third book comes out in August (I heard the 11th then I heard the 14th). I can’t wait!!

Also, they are turning The Hunger Games into a movie! I am so pumped. Lionsgate has bought the rights, and Collins is going to adapt her book to screenplay. I’m so glad she’s the one doing it. I am going to see that for sure.

(And also, I have written about Hunger Games and Catching Fire 2x on LoLa because I love it so much. http://bit.ly/bOYo3M and http://bit.ly/bA2L18)

I liked the second book because it was unexpected- BACK into the games? I was expecting them to do as she suggested and take to the woods to be more of an exploration/ survival in the woods kind of motif. So I was pleasantly surprised.

What I didn’t like about this book was the development of the characters. Katniss was a good portrayal of your typical, if very skilled, teenage girl (moody, rebellious, indecisive) but what could be forgiven in the first book due to the pace and the adventure wanes in the second. It’s reminiscent of twilight in that you start to wonder- why do these two genuinely good guys love THIS girl? She doesn’t pay them undue amounts of attention. She only seems to care when there is an emergency. She is stiff, self-centered, and motivated by her own gains. You could make that argument, and the book does, that that is a consequence of the new world. And yet both Peeta and Gale are not that way. I think maybe she overstepped Katniss’s inability to feel and undeveloped both Peeta and Gale so that they became only subcharacters in the main plot. Actually even her mother and Prim begin to lack personality, just people who want her to win and nothing else.

It also felt contrived towards the end, like she had run out of fresh ideas.

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