Title: Catching Fire (The Hunger Games #2)
by Suzanne Collins
Publishing Info: September 1, 2009 by Scholastic Inc.
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Date Completed: January 9, 2013 (Re-read. Originally read 5/31/11)
Related Posts: Mockingjay (The Hunger Games #3)
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.
SO. This was my re-read of CATCHING FIRE. Since I read all of The Hunger Games trilogy before I started blogging, I figured a review is still appropriate!
First impressions upon finishing my re-read? I STILL LOVE IT. I still love the first book more, but for some reason I was thinking I was a little disappointed in CF, but then I looked back at my Goodreads rating and then I finished and I was like, “Oh yeah, that was just MOCKINGJAY.”
Once again, I was surprised at how little time was spent in the Games and how much time was spent building up to it. I was keeping track on Goodreads (like I always do) and I noticed that my comment about getting to the Games wasn’t until about 70% of the way through! And you know what’s funny is that it felt like it took forever to get there and it didn’t all at the same time. I forgot SO MUCH about what really went on in the first half (and in the Arena too, actually) because (time for a secret if you didn’t already know) I have terrible retention of content when I read. I don’t know if I read too fast or what, but I’m just so incredibly bad at remembering content after I’m done reading a book. That being said, it actually made the re-read pretty exciting! Even though it may seem boring that Katniss and Peeta go on their little Victor’s Tour and we’re not in the action of the Games for a long time, the reader is definitely not lulled into a boring recap of The Hunger Games. We do get a little bit of recap that happens naturally throughout the text so that’s an absolute bonus.
I love the way the plot twists in CATCHING FIRE and my attention was definitely held the whole book. We deal with the same characters that we got to know and love from book one and I guess some people could say that throwing them back in the Games is a cop-out and a repeat of book one, but I love it! It brings what the audience was so thrilled with in book one and is reinvented to keep us coming back for more. The the Games end with a different twist so we don’t repeat THG all over again as well as a whole new agenda for all of the Tributes.
Since the movie is coming up and we’re getting little sneak peeks of pictures and whatnot, it’s definitely helpful to have that recap of what happened in the book so I can be judgmental when I go see Catching Fire and whisper to my friends “That’s not how it happened in the book!”
ALSO, I’m really anxious to get a re-read going of MOCKINGJAY, because let’s face it. I was super disappointed with it my first time around. I’m kind of hoping that now I know what happens, I can concentrate on what’s happening as I read (or listen, if that’s the case) and not being frantically flipping through pages trying to find out how it ends.
Katniss: I still think Katniss is a great heroine! Okay, maybe she’s a bit stubborn and dense at times, but she’s strong, talented, loyal, and always a fierce competitor. I got a little annoyed with her obsession to save Peeta in CF just because it was kind of martyrish and it got a little old and repetitive.
Peeta: You know what. I always thought I was Team Gale, but I think I’m just anti-Josh Hutcherson as Peeta and it’s clouded my vision — PEETA FANS, HEAR ME OUT. I think Josh Hutcherson is stinkin’ adorable and I’ve liked him since I saw him in Zathura and I was like, “Don’t think I’m a creep, but that kid is gonna grow up to be a cute teenager” and SEE? But my problem with him as Peeta is that I just don’t see it. And in CATCHING FIRE, there are so many references to Peeta being tall and if I’m picturing JH……. It’s just not right and it really throws the whole character off for me, although JH really does a great job of nailing Peeta’s personality which okay, okay, I guess that’s the more important part. Oh what does it matter, I’ll just end up hating him in MOCKINGJAY anyway.
Finnick Odair: Helloooooo, Finnick, nice to meet you. I’ve always loved his character and that we get to see the smooth-talking, pretty guy as well as a lot of depth that he covers up with what the Capitol wants to see. I can’t wait to see his character in the movie too.
Johanna Mason: Another character I’m really interested to see in the movie (Jena Malone)- – I started to like her even more (and realized she’s a lot younger than I originally pictured her for whatever reason) and really enjoyed her character even more this time around! I know, I’m sorry I’m talking about actors and the movie again, but I can’t help it! Super interested in seeing how Jena Malone plays Johanna because I totally didn’t see it before I re-read CF and now I kind of think she’s perfect!
I loved this series on my first read and the re-read is shaping up to be just as great if not better! Definitely one I will always recommend.