Sunday, 5 September 2010

Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Title: Catching Fire
Author: Suzanne Collins
Series: The Hunger Games
Genre: Dystopian, action
Publisher: Scholastic

Blurb (goodreads):

 "Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. 

The Capitol is angry. 

The Capitol wants revenge."


Suzanne Collins took my breath away with The Hunger Games, and she definitely hasn’t failed me now with Catching Fire. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough, and the book was glued permanently to my hands.

As with The Hunger Games, many people caught me moping about with Catching Fire in my hands, my eyes transfixed to the dynamic action before me, oblivious to the world.

Because when you read Suzanne Collins, that’s the feeling you get. Her magic embodies the words on paper, and paints a story so realistic, the reader is completely immersed in this world - full of heart racing action, thrilling danger, and complicated relationships. The hardback, library copy I read from became an inseperable part of me.

The state of Peeta and Katniss’ relationship in the earlier half of the book was disappointing to me, as an avid Team Peeta fan. But the dynamics between Katniss and Gale were explored through heart-warming events and I (finally) began to understand the reasoning behind Team Gale. Alas, I wasn’t a convert.

Then there was the victory tour, where Gale was left behind, and I had mixed emotions about the sweet (from Peeta), but forced (from Katniss) exchanges between the two. But it was eye-opening to metaphorically see Suzanne Collins’ predictions of a dystopian future where districts are encouraged into heavy industry.

On a side note, I drew a comparison of this to the Soviet Union’s treatment of various nations under its sphere of influence during the Cold War – the nations were encouraged to specialise in various industries. I commend Collins for her envisions, because like they say, history has a tendency to repeat itself, and so this dark future is not entirely outside the scope of reality.

Back to the review, I loved the re-immersion into the Hunger Games (note the lack of italics – I mean the actual games themselves), and although this was essentially a replay of various plot elements from the first book, I felt that it was vastly different, and just as engrossing.

Cinna (oh, how I love – spoiler highlight: and miss – Cinna ) continued to be amazing, and so were Haymitch, as Suzanne Collins channelled their personalities. And I loved the other victors, the complex web of relationships between them. Collins miraculously drew them together into an infallible set of characters (not that their personalities were perfect, but they were entirely relatable).

Peeta, Finnick, Mags, Beetee, Wiress, Johanna, even the two morphilings from 6...amazing.

Fangirl Mockingjay-spoilery highlight moment:  
{I LOVE FINNICK! Why did he have to die?? WHY?! *Sobs into the keyboard* }

And the ending of the book was on such a huge cliffhanger, it was all I could do to stop myself from jumping onto Wikipedia and spoiling Mockingjay for myself.

In conclusion: the book was thrilling, amazing, perfect, everything I wished for. I could not have loved Catching Fire more.

And Suzanne Collins? She is the embodiment of awesome

Do you seriously need a rating?
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ - 5 hearts ALL THE WAY


anjohnston said...

I can't agree with your review more! This book really lived up to the first which is important (and almost impossible to do) in a series.

I've always been Team Peeta but I got where Gale Team was coming from. It was certainly nice to see how both boys act around Katniss. I really loved Finnick in this book. Okay, okay, I really loved all the characters in this book!

Hope you enjoy Mockingjay and thanks for your review!

Tina (Book Couture) said...

;) Thank you, anjohnston/Amber. (How should I call you?)

Mmm, I am totally Team Peeta - except, in all got a little downhill there, didn't it?

Have you read Mockingjay yet? I've just finished, and I found it a little disappointing. Idon't know how to really write a review on it.

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