Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Wednesday August 10, 2011 at 12:00 am |

catchingfire-scPublisher: Scholastic
Copyright: 2009
Published: September 1, 2009
Pages: 391
Form: Paperback
Series: The Hunger Games, Book #2
Author: Suzanne Collins
Buy The Book: B&N | Book Depository

SPARKS ARE IGNITING.
FLAMES ARE SPREADING.
AND THE CAPITOL WANTS REVENGE.

Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games.  She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive.  Katniss should be relieved, happy even.  Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be.  Gale holds her at an icy distance.  Peeta has turned his back on her completely.  And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol–a rebellion than Katniss and Peeta may have helped to create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest that she’s afraid she cannot stop.  And what scares her even more is that she’s not entriely convinced she should try.  As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol’s cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever.  If they can’t prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.  Katniss is about to be tested as never before.

***WARNING: FOLLOWING REVIEW IS A BIT SPOILERY AND RAMBLY (YEAH I MADE UP SOME WORDS BUT IT’S MY BLOG! LKL.)***

My Thoughts:

Catching Fire was awesomely FANTASTIC just like The Hunger Games!  Seriously, I don’t understand why some people say they didn’t like this one as much.  I absolutely loved it.  So in the second installment of THG, Katniss is living on easy street with her family, but still goes hunting to help Gale and his family since he now works in the mines and refuses her monetary help.  She and Peeta are stiffly polite to each other and poor Haymitch is an even bigger mess.  But the Capitol seems to have a firm foot on everybody’s backside and unbeknownst to Katniss, the people are sick of it.

Really, I can’t even properly articulate how much I’ve enjoyed these books.  So this review probably won’t read like a traditional review.  Even though life is easier for Katniss and her family, I can’t help but sympathize with the girl.  On one hand she has a boy who has loved her from afar since they were children, sacrificed for her, and wants nothing more than to protect her.  And on the other hand she has a guy who’s been a loyal friend for years.  A guy whose strong and noble, and who also loves her in his own way.  And then she has her relationships and behavior dictated by the Capitol, poor thing can’t catch a break.

And when the Quarter Quell arises, honestly, I knew they would punish her.  But I felt certain they would do it by tossing her sister in the Games.  Even though I had an inkling, since the end of the first book, that they were going to put Katniss back in the Games, I don’t know why it still caught me so off guard in this book.  I felt like running and wailing right along with her.  And honestly, I didn’t know if I could go through it all with her again.  There was this tug of war going on inside of me.  While I wanted to be back in the arena because I know Katniss and Peeta are survivors and will do their best to overcome, I didn’t know if I was emotionally ready to relive the horror of it again.  And will the Capitol ever cease to think of all manner of torture for those kids?

But when the knowledge of a rebellion begins unfolding I felt the stirrings of pride and triumph in my belly.  I so want for them all to take their lives back and put their foots firmly up the Capitol’s hateful ass, especially that President Snow.  This book was just as brilliantly written and put together as the first and I was left pining for more.  So you all know I ordered Mockinjay immediately after finishing Catching Fire.

Now as for Peeta and Gale, I am still unclear which one I like best for Katniss and I’ll tell you why.  Peeta is without a doubt a wonderful young man.  I love everything about him, even his sensitivity.  And he interacts well with Katniss.  Even strained they seem to have an easy friendship and you can tell she is comfortable around him.  But Gale is a good man as well.  I love how well he takes care of his family and his loyalty to Katniss.  But I still haven’t seen enough interaction between the two to make a determination.  We never really get to see her spend quality time with Gale, and until I do I have to reserve judgement about it.  So for now, I’m still team both.  I guess I’ll have to read Mockingjay to see how it all goes.

Anyway, if you haven’t started this series, do yourself a favor and go get these books and read them immediately.  These are definitely books that will be read over and over because they are just that good.  Kudos to Collins, an excellent follow up to the first installment.  I can’t wait to read the last part.

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Jade

Written by Jade

Jade is a book blogger from NC. In her spare time she loves to read and build and maintain websites. She has been reading since she was four and building websites since she was 16. SortofBeautiful.com was born on March 8, 2011 and is a fantastic merging of her two favorite hobbies. Enjoy your stay!

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14 Responses to “Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins”

  1. I haven’t posted my Catching Fire review yet. I think I’ll do a double review with Catching Fire and Mockingjay since I won Mockingjay recently (how awesome is that?).

    I enjoyed Catching Fire even more than The Hunger Games and I LOVED The Hunger Games. Katniss seemed less robotic to me in this one and I became even more attached to Peeta. As for Gale, I’m with you. I just haven’t seen the interaction enough to see. Peeta seems so old for his age. He is so wise. The ending through me for a complete loop. It seriously blew my mind.

    This is definitely one of the best series I’ve read in a while. Great review.

  2. Jade Jade says:

    Woohoo! Go Alexis! I wish I had won one of these, but my sister did buy CF for me so I guess that counts too! I loved it too. I think I liked equally as much…I really just love them both for slightly different reasons. And the ending threw me too. I just didn’t see it coming…but I was a bit relieved. I knew something was up when the Head gamemaker made a point to show her his watch. I just had no idea things would fall in place the way they did. Collins di a great job laying out the groundwork in both books. Now I can’t wait for Mockigjay. I think a joint review will be great.

  3. I’m at the tail end of my Hunger Games Obsession. Just finished reading Mockingjay a few days ago. I won’t put in any spoilers but would love to hear what you thought once you’re done. I can’t say I enjoyed Catching Fire more than The Hunger Games. I liked both books but there is always something so magical about a first book when you’re just learning about a world and getting to know it. I like Peeta as a character but I fell in love with Gale from the first page so I won’t comment on the love triangle 🙂

  4. So glad you loved it. I adore this book too.

  5. Brie says:

    I also loved Catching Fire. I guess people didn’t like it as much because they found it repetitive but I actually liked this arena more and I think that is was a testament of Suzanne’s abilities as a writer that she was able to basically write the same book twice and still make it original. And there’s also Finn of course. You need to read Mockingjay, that book is completely different to the first two. I can’t wait to read your review.

  6. Jade says:

    @ Lan thanks for no spoilers. I agree with you about being introduced to a new world etc. When I think about it I probably to like THG just a bit more for that very reason. But CF does come in a very close second. And once I finish reading Mockingjay (just got the email my book has been shipped), I’d love to hear your thoughts on Gale and why you loved him immediately. I do like Gale a lot, but I just haven’t seen enough QT time with him and Katniss to determine if I like her with him or Peeta best. But either I think would be satisfying.

    @ JuJu, YES, it was great.

    @ Brie, YES, I did love Finn too! he was a great addition to the books and a character I wasn’t expecting. And you’re right, she did write essentially the same bok with more background noise and a new twist. I loved every second of it. Seriously, I cannot wait to get Mockingjay inmy hands. I’m trying to hurry up and read these two books I have to get done before it comes though so I can just enjoy it.

  7. I have read so many wonderful reviews about this series. I just have not been able to grasp the WANT to read feeling yet. i’m going to really try. really try. IS this series dystopia, sci-ficiton, fantasy or what. I usually don’t dab with those books, but I’m willing to read any genre, well almost, at least ONCE. I have placed it on the “Thinking About’ book list.
    enjoyed reading the review.

  8. Jade says:

    @ Sidne, they are dystopian novels, but they are the best of the best. Truly EXCELLENT books and definitely worth at the very least a try.

  9. Missie says:

    Yeah, I kind of don’t understand criticism of Catching Fire either. From what I’ve read, people view it as HG part 2, and my only thought to that is Umm.. hello?! Of course it’s Part 2! What else would it be?

    So glad you enjoyed it. Mockingjay didn’t thrill me. So many deaths, but that is war for you. 🙁

    But I will always love and admire the characters.

  10. Lena says:

    Great review. I didn’t enjoy Catching Fire as much as The Hunger Games. It was a disappointment to me. There was really no romance between Katniss and Gale, since he barely made an appearance in thus sequel. I too adore Peeta, he a gentlemly young fellow.

    P.S. Thanks for checking on me during my hiatus. It truly meant alot to me. Gratefully and thankfully I say thank you.

  11. Jade Jade says:

    @ Lena, you are not the only one that feels that way. I’ve read other reviews of people who didn’t like CF. And that was no problem, I wanted to make sure you were okay since you are kind going through a difficult time right now.

  12. I adore this trilogy so much! And I loved your review of Catching Fire. I agree with the above comment about the ending…it threw me (but in a great way). Also, I really enjoyed the development and interactions with the other characters in the arena. I thought Ms. Collins did a fabulous job fleshing them out for us. My daughter asked to read The Hunger Games this past Tuesday and she finished the series last night. She was obsessed. And I’m pleased to report that she loved all three books equally.

    🙂

  13. Max says:

    For me “Catching Fire” is definitely not as good as the “Hunger Games”. I think anyone will agree with that. It was weird actually. Really long at parts where nothing is happening and then out of nowhere the plot goes 180 degree in different direction in 3 pages – thats pretty anoying to say the least. Probably a good idea would be to make the book longer (+200 pages?) and let the tension build up more before reaching the highest point. Still my interest was kept continusely. I could not put it down till all was finished… Loved this series. I wish there was more.

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