Thursday, October 8, 2009

Catching Fire

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Hunger Games Series #2
Hardcover, 391 pages
Scholastic, September 2009
ISBN-13: 9780439023498
YA dystopian fiction
very highly recommended

Synopsis from publisher:
Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge.

My Thoughts:

After The Hunger Games, this was a very satisfying second book. Yes, it's true that like most second books in a trilogy, events do seem to move a bit slowly as the story is in transition, but I thought Catching Fire was very good and kept up the high standards Collins previously set. Book three should be amazing. Although it has been said that the YA label only reflects the presence of a teenage protagonist, I still feel that the reading level is also simpler. (I imagine I could do something like a Flesch Reading Ease test to prove my point, but it doesn't matter that much to me.) Most YA books do have simplified language and plot lines. They are quick, easy reads. As I mentioned in the review for The Hunger Games, " this plot has been done before, and that Collins didn't provide many in-depth details on the society, setting, or the cameras, which is all true, but I still felt this was a very successful YA book."
Catching Fire is very highly recommended.

If it were up to me, I would try to forget the Hunger Games entirely. Never speak of them. Pretend they were nothing but a bad dream. But the Victory Tour makes that impossible. Strategically placed almost midway between the annual Games, it is the Capitol's way of keeping the horror fresh and immediate. Not only are we in the districts forced to remember the iron grip of the Capitol's power each year, we are forced to celebrate it. And this year, I am one of the stars of the show. I will have to travel from district to district, to stand before the cheering crowds who secretly loathe me, to look down into the faces of the families whose children I have killed... pg 3-4

The only time I really get to see Gale now is on Sundays, when we meet up in the woods to hunt together. It's still the best day of the week, but it's not like it used to be before, when we could tell each other anything. pg. 5

Peeta keeps all of us in fresh baked goods. I hunt. He bakes. Haymitch drinks. We have our own ways to stay busy, to keep thoughts of our time as contestants in the Hunger Games at bay. pg. 15

Then he turns and my heart skips a beat.I'm staring into the snakelike eyes of President Snow. pg. 17

"And if a girl from District Twelve of all places can defy the Capitol and walk away unharmed, what is to stop them from doing the same?" he says. "What is to prevent, say, an uprising?" pg. 21

"Katniss Everdeen, the girl who was on fire, you have provided the spark that, left unattended, may grow into an inferno that destroys Panem," he says.
"Why don't you just kill me now?" I blurt out.
"Publicly?" he asks. "That would only add fuel to the flames." pg. 23

No comments: