Original Fire: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Year Published: 2009
Published by: Scholastic Inc
Number of Pages: 439
First Sentence: “I clasp the flask between my hands even though the warmth from the tea has long since leached into the frozen air.”
Goodreads rating: 4/5
Katniss Everdeen survived the Hunger Games. Now the Capitol wants revenge.
Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark are still alive. Katniss should be relieved, but now there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol – a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.
As the nation watches Katniss and Peeta, the stakes are higher than ever. One false move and the consequences will be unimaginable.
I did not love this book as much as I loved the first one. I think it is because it’s slower in pace and that much of the plot takes place outside of the arena. It’s still a very good book, and I still loved it. It is slower though and the real story don’t start until you are just over 1/3 into the book. However, the first bit is still interesting and you learn a lot about several of the characters.
I have a friend who says that she does not like Katniss. Until I read this book I didn’t understand why. Don’t get me wrong, she is still a great character. However, in this book she is selfish, irrational and don’t really care about the consequences her actions will have on others. At the same time, we are talking about a 17-year-old girl who has survived a very traumatic experience. If that is the reason why Collins have written Katniss as she has in the book, then I suppose we can overlook it. If not, then it reflects very badly on Katniss character (not that I was a saint at 17, and I didn’t have the exusce of competing in a Hunger Games scenario).
Maybe she has written it to show exactly how good and selfless Peeta is. If this book did anything, it made my love for Peeta grow. He makes sure to help everyone, he knows how Katniss feels about him and still love her and at the same time respect her. He is more than willing to sacrifice himself for the people around him, especially Katniss. Peeta is the true hero of these books in my opinion.
I liked the fact that we got to learn more about the background characters. Gale, Prim, Haymitch and Katniss mother were all given more space, alongside several of the victors. Finnick and Johanna are as amazing as one might think, and some of the other victors add little special things to the story.
The actual story then? At the same time as I thought it was a little difficult to read, the plot that was located in District 12 was very interesting. Here we get more proof of how slimy and disgusting President Snow really is and the development of several of the characters that we met in the first book. Same thing with the Victors tour. Here we got to see the relationship of Katniss and Peeta, and also the stirrings of rebellion throughout all of Panem.
*SPOILER ALERT* (unless you’ve seen the film)
I was however relieved when we returned to the arena. When the Quarter Quell was announced I was almost relieved. Finally the tempo would increase. I was not dissappointed. Here we got to meet several of the victors of which there were some interesting characters. I loved the fact that you could see the friendship between them, and the fact that at least before the games started they tried to work together to stop it. It of course falls apart in the arena. But we do see some bonds and promises being kept and the willingness to work together. The fact that you can easily tell that there are a group of them determined to keep both Katniss and Peeta alive.
*END OF SPOILER*
The book then ends with the biggest cliffhanger to ever cliffhang. It’s cruel. But I love it.
Do I recommend it?
Hell yeah I do. I recommend people to read the whole series since it’s a very important subject it deals with. It is a contemporary problem in several of the countries in the world, that people are being oppressed by their government, and some have been so brainwashed by propaganda that they can’t see anything wrong with their situation and those who do are taken care of. The books are very important to read I think, especially if you can avoid viewing them as media do, who are focusing most of their attention on the “love-triangle”. Don’t do that and the message of the books is amazing.