Catching Fire written by Suzanne Collins
Publisher Scholastic Inc.
Publication Date: September 1st 2009
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult
Series: The Hunger Games #2
Narrated by Carolyn McCormick
Length: 11 hrs and 41 mins
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Sparks are igniting.
Flames are spreading.
And the Capitol wants revenge.
Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games. She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive. Katniss should be relieved, happy even. After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale. 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 that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.
Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she's afraid she cannot stop. And what scares her even more is that she's not entirely 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.
In Catching Fire, the second novel in the Hunger Games trilogy, Suzanne Collins continues the story of Katniss Everdeen, testing her more than ever before...and surprising readers at every turn.
“Let the 75th Hunger Games begin!”
There is a lot to say about Catching Fire that I do not know where to begin. This book is a precursor of the things to come in the next book, Mockingjay and it also lays the groundwork for the rebellion.
I could not stop listening to this book. Not only is it amazingly written, I get to know all the characters more. Katniss, Peeta, Gayle and Haymitch all reveal their characters here. I also love the little hints sprinkled throughout the first part of the book, giving us a hint of what would happen in the arena. We meet a lot of interesting characters and despite most of them dying or just having bit parts in the book, they make this read very interesting.
As I’ve said in my Hunger Games review, I love Katniss Everdeen and I think she is one of the most iconic characters in YA literature. I absolutely love that she is NOT at the forefront of the rebellion. And although a lot of people see her as a passive heroine, I do not. Her defiance towards the Capitol is subtle and I love that she does not become a rebel leader.
In this book, I also see a different side of Peeta and Gayle. Again, their love triangle is really unique in that Katniss is not really driven by love/lust that most YA books have but it is mostly driven by her fears. With Gayle, she sees him as one of her best friends in a time where she just lost her father and had been struggling to feed her mother and Prim; with Peeta, she see’s him as someone who can relate to her experiences in the arena. Because let’s face it, surviving The Hunger Games was really traumatizing.
The changes that happen to the characters is genius! I like that Katniss feels like she is slowly losing her humanity. Again, this is a unique nuance of her character because I feel that it is a realistic change from the trauma that she had experienced before. While I like that Katniss feels like she is all negative, the balance that Ms. Collins added with Peeta was perfect! Peeta now stands out as a representation of all that is good in Panem and he rises to the challenge, most especially in the arena.
Catching Fire is a must read. It is an edge of the seat read that you just cannot put down once you start reading (or listening) to it. I recommend reading this book right after reading The Hunger Games (if you haven’t already read it).
This book is again narrated by Carolyn McCormick and as I’ve said in my review for the Hunger Games, I felt like she was reading to a child. Again, her narration did little to enhance the book at all and I still had to force myself to continue listening. She still used the annoying voices for Effie, Prim, and other Capitol characters and I could not help but cringe!