With the second installment in The Hunger Games trilogy, Collins has totally defied the unfortunate truth that a sequel rarely lives up to the promiseWith the second installment in The Hunger Games trilogy, Collins has totally defied the unfortunate truth that a sequel rarely lives up to the promise of the first book. Not only does this one not disappoint, it's a truly good book. No "middle book syndrome" here! Once again, Collins has turned in a page-turner of a story, that, while it revisits some of the themes from The Hunger Games, is also fresh and new.
What happened after the dramatic finale of Katniss's Hunger Games? Collins relates the effects of Katniss's actions in her personal world, throughout the 12 Districts, and even in the Capitol. In doing so, Collins has given fuller flesh to the world her characters inhabit. In Catching Fire, she not only ratchets up the tension, but sets the stage for a thoughtful, insightful, and exciting final book in the trilogy. If expectations were high for the second book, they're that much higher for the third....more
It's not often you find a book that doesn't have a single wrong note to it, but this is one. This book really has it all, from suspense to a little biIt's not often you find a book that doesn't have a single wrong note to it, but this is one. This book really has it all, from suspense to a little bit of political philosophy to unrequited love. Collins takes all the elements of this story and puts them together in a tightly-woven narrative that keeps its pace throughout. Her message, about government and the masses, is not very subtle, but the book is so well written that it goes down very smoothly. I could gush on and on, but I won't. I will say that I'm very skeptical about the proposed sequel(s), because they couldn't possibly be as good as this one!...more
I'm not sure why DuPrau chose to gradually lower the reading level of this series, but this book reads much more like a book for children than the firI'm not sure why DuPrau chose to gradually lower the reading level of this series, but this book reads much more like a book for children than the first three in the series, even though the characters and subject matter remain on a young adult level.
Be that as it may, this is still quite a good book. In the third book, the people of Ember and the people of Sparks are just barely managing to live together harmoniously, but conditions have not improved over the hard winter. Food is scarce and tempers are running short. When Lina and Doon discover a book that describes something left behind for the people of Ember, they decide to go back to their city and try to find this mysterious item, as well as see what supplies may have been left behind when the people left.
What they discover allows DuPrau to end her series on a very hopeful note. She does not disguise the fact that life continues to be hard, but she makes it clear that by working together, the people of Ember and Sparks are able to come together and make a bright new future. As cheesy as that sounds, she writes it so well that you can't help but smile and feel hopeful yourself....more