Tag Archives: The Hunger Games

Catching Fire – Review

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Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Age: YA

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In the stunning sequel to The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins picks up exactly where the first book ended. Against all odds, as well as against the Capitol’s wishes, Katniss is the victor of the Hunger Games, along with her fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. Although, she should be feeling relieved at having survived the deadly arena, she will soon return to her family and friends and never have to worry about stepping foot in the arena ever again. That was the idea, until President Snow paid Katniss a visit shortly after her return home. Only then did Katniss realize the full extent of her actions in the arena and the rumble she and Peeta unknowingly started throughout the 12 districts in the Capital. Now its up to Katniss to try to quell the anxieties of the districts by proving her love to Peeta beyond a shadow of a doubt, otherwise the consequences will be terrifying.

I couldn’t wait to jump right into Catching Fire, so I grabbed the audiobook because it was the only format available at my library. I did really enjoy this book. It carried the same quick pace as Hunger Games, the same themes of tyranny, censorship and instinctual human behaviors come into play.

I did have a problem with Katniss though. Throughout most of the book, I found her to be more naive than her character was originally set up to be in the first book. I found her fake love for Peeta to be somewhat alarming at how easily she could slip into the lovey-girlfriend role. Her impulses are emotionally driven, and not very accurate most of the time. She is overly suspicious of everyone around her, quick to cast accusations if anyone says or does something she doesn’t like. She and Peeta form a strong bond with their time in the arena, and then again on tour across the districts as the star-cross lovers, the Victors of the Hunger Games. Another thing that didn’t sit well with me is that Catching Fire seemed repetitive. It was a lot like Hunger Games, pretty much the same book, but with a few minor tweaks and twists at the end.

It did end on a powerful, although expected, cliffhanger. I feel fully vested in this series, even though I had higher hopes for Catching Fire. It does serve its purpose as the middle title in any trilogy. It forms the bridge that carries the story from its troublesome beginning, to the most likely violent and dramatic ending.

Catching Fire
by Suzanne Collins
Scholastic Audiobooks
10 discs, 11 hours and 37 minutes

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The Hunger Games – Review

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The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Age: YA

Set in the ruins of what was formerly North America, lies a country named Panem. In control is the Capitol, surrounded by 12 outlying districts living in poverty and fear of the cruel rules set by President Snow in the Capitol.

As a form of punishment for crimes committed by generations past, every year each district must supply one male and one female tribute between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate in the Hunger Games. Katniss Everdeen is only 16 when she steps up to take her younger sister’s place in the death-match arena. Having already resigned herself to the dim fate of death, Katniss surprises herself and the nation when she finds herself standing strong and surviving the barbaric games. Although Katniss had her future in the arena planned, everything changed because of one Peeta Mellark,  whose bombshell announcement at the beginning of the games left Katniss with difficult choices to make about life and death.

What can I say about this book that hasn’t been said already? What praise can I bestow that won’t sound redundant to every other book blogger that has already posted a review about this book. I couldn’t put the book down, I read it into the wee hours past midnight, and finished it completely the next morning after a restless night of sleep thinking about the book.

Obviously, I loved this book. I loved Collins ability to create a dystopia world of censorship, tyranny and abuse of personal freedoms. It formed a commentary over the world of individual rights abuse taking place in Vietnam, China, Iran and many other countries that try to silence their citizens through fear and cruelty.

The Hunger Games is set up like the Olympics, full of fanfare, district uniforms and even televised interviews with each tribute. The whole thing is a disgusting display of power and corruption on behalf of the Capitol. The districts have no choice but to obey with the yearly reaping.

Katniss is a likable character. She is clever, and as quick on her feet as she is sharp of the tongue with her wit. Having taken control of the family affairs and livelihood at an early age after her father died in a mining accident, she is full of survival skills and self-reliance to forge through the games. I found Peeta to be compassionate, reliable, but also resilient and a fighter. Strong of heart, eloquent with words and highly ethical and contemplative of his and Katniss situation.

If you loved, liked, or even vaguely enjoyed the Uglies trilogy, then this is the book and series for you. Katniss reminded me a lot of Tally Youngblood. Forced into a situation out of her control, her fate in the hands of people with no compassion or care. Her struggle to find her identity in a fight or flight arena, faced with difficult choices of loyalty, acceptance and understanding.

The Hunger Games
by Suzanne Collins
Scholastic Press, 2008
ISBN 0439023483
374 pages

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Teaser Tuesday 6/8/2010

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TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

# Grab your current read.

# Let the book fall open to a random page.

# Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page somewhere between lines 7 and 12.

# You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given! # Please avoid spoilers!

Can I just say that I feel like that the last book blogger to be just reading this book? Its such an awesome book, I don’t want to put it down, I wish I could call in sick to work and stay home to read the whole thing!

My Two Teasers:

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

When I finally do come to my senses, I lie still, waiting for the next onslaught of imagery. But eventually I accept that the poison must have finally worked its way out of my system, leaving my body wracked and feeble.