Dan Schwent's Reviews > Catching Fire

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
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Nov 14, 12

bookshelves: homework-from-the-ladies, young-adultery, 2012
Read from November 12 to 14, 2012

In the wake of The Hunger Games, insurrection brews, an insurrection Katniss has unknowingly become the symbol of. President Snow expresses his displeasure with Katniss in the only way he knows how. Can Katniss and the other victors of the Hunger Games survive the Quarter Quell?

Here we are, the middle book of the Hunger Games trilogy. In a lot of ways, it feels like a transitional book. In some others, it feels like a rehash of the first one.

I liked seeing how the Hunger Games changed the lives of Katniss, Peeta, and the rest of District 12. Katniss' relationships with Gale and Peeta both moved along. Seeing the other districts as the Victory Tour moved along was a nice bit of world building. I also liked that Haymitch's past was explored a bit. President Snow and his controlling of Katniss made my skin crawl. I can't wait until someone settles his hash in the third book.

Of the new characters introduced, I have to say Finnick is by far my favorite. The carnage level was ramped up significantly in the death match part of the story. The combatants were a lot more capable and the threats were much much worse. The nerve gas in particular is going to stick with me.

The growing unrest really makes this feel like a transitional book. It almost feels like the Empire Strikes Back at times. Instead of the whole "Ben, why didn't you tell me?" at the end, it's (view spoiler)

Still, I didn't like it as much as I did the first book. It was a little been there, done that, especially in the end. Also, Katniss seems to have taken a step back. She seemed very strong in the first book but not so much in this one. Also, I know the whole Katniss/Peeta/Gale love triangle is supposed to be a big part of the story but Gale doesn't get developed enough for me to really care about him and Peeta's feelings for Katniss are a little on the unbelievable side given Katniss barely gives him the time of day most of the time.

Three stars, possibly 3.5. On to Mockingjay! Time to boat this bass.
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Reading Progress

11/13/2012 page 30
7.0%
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Comments (showing 1-12 of 12) (12 new)

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message 1: by Laima (new) - added it

Laima I read the first book and really liked it but I don't think I'll read the rest of the trilogy.


message 2: by Dan (new) - rated it 3 stars

Dan Schwent Laima wrote: "I read the first book and really liked it but I don't think I'll read the rest of the trilogy."

I liked this book but there won't be a Catching Fire-shaped void in your life if you never read it.


message 3: by Sam (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sam Quixote Mockingjay suuuuuucks. Boat that basshole!


message 4: by Dan (new) - rated it 3 stars

Dan Schwent Sam wrote: "Mockingjay suuuuuucks. Boat that basshole!"

So it IS like Return of the Jedi...


message 5: by Sam (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sam Quixote Gale turns out to be 2 ewoks standing on top of the other in a long coat.


message 6: by Dan (new) - rated it 3 stars

Dan Schwent Sam wrote: "Gale turns out to be 2 ewoks standing on top of the other in a long coat."

No spoilers!


Wendy You'll either love or hate Mockingjay. While it was completely opposite of what I expected, I loved it and thought it was genius.

She throws you for a loop, for sure.


Jonathan I like Return of the Jedi! Well apart from all the fake Ewoks but I like it a fair bit, not as good as the 5th in some ways, in others I like it more. Good review and I must admit that with the 3rd you will either like it or you will hate it. I liked it a lot, I thought the ending was harsh and bitter-sweet in a way that made me emotionally dissatisfied but thinking that it was a realistic ending and not one that was forced for reader's opinions.


Wendy Jonathan wrote: "I liked it a lot, I thought the ending was harsh and bitter-sweet in a way that made me emotionally dissatisfied but thinking that it was a realistic ending and not one that was forced for reader's opinions. "

Yes. I think much of the dissatisfaction came about because it really takes some chances. It isn't pretty and it doesn't end with people walking into the sunset.

I also recommend reading The Girl Who Was on Fire: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games Trilogy. Not all the essays are awesome, but a few do shed light on much of the symbolism and underlying themes.

It helped me resolve my initial let-down.


Trisha I liked them all, even book #3, but I can see why a lot of people were disappointed by it - they are the ones who didn't get the Hollywood ending they hoped for.


message 11: by Sam (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sam Quixote Trisha wrote: "I liked them all, even book #3, but I can see why a lot of people were disappointed by it - they are the ones who didn't get the Hollywood ending they hoped for."

I don't think it was that people "didn't get the Hollywood ending" and more that people were disappointed with the noticeably poorer storytelling choices and incredibly lazy writing in the third book.


Trisha Okay, well the people I've talked to wanted a happier ending. No doubt there are plenty of others I haven't talked to (until you anyway) who fit your category!


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