Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Series: The Hunger Games #2
Publisher: Scholastic Press on September 1, 2009
Genre(s): Dystopian (YA)
Sparks are igniting. Flames are spreading. And the Capitol wants revenge.
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. In Catching Fire, the second novel in the Hunger Games trilogy, Suzanne Collins continues the story of Katniss Everdeen, testing her more than ever before...and surprising readers at every turn.
Still reeling from the events of the Hunger Games, Katniss has returned home to a life that is very different from the one she left. Gale, the best friend (and maybe more) who’s always been there for her is strangely distant, and the time they used to spend together sneakily hunting outside the perimeter he now spends in the mines. Peeta has taken it a step futher and has absolutely nothing to do with her, despite everything they went through together in the arena. But worse, the unforgiving Capital is watching.
None too pleased at having been bested when Katniss and Peeta threatened suicide rather than attempt to kill each other, President Snow wants revenge. The single act which saved the two was an act of defiance, and Snow is determined to take control again. To save face, he needs Katniss and Peeta to continue playing the fated young lovers game that bought them sympathy during the Games. Only now, small acts of defiance are happening around all of Panem, and it looks as if even their little act will make no difference. And now it looks like they’ll have to compete in a new Games event, one in which each district must send two Games survivors to a first of its kind special Hunger Games.
At first, I was a little pissed, but I’m pretty sure that was the point. I mean, I didn’t think life would magically be wonderful after the end of the first book, but I also didn’t think Katniss and Peeta would almost immediately be sent back to (once again) almost certain death. And it pretty much took Gale out of the running. I had hoped that the love triangle thingy would get played out, but instead, Katniss and Peeta were sent on the road to tour all the districts, after which they were sent off to the killing arena again. So no Gale. And I kinda love him.
Still incredibly awesome, and in some ways, I liked it even more than The Hunger Games! That’s saying a lot, considering that Collins re-used the whole Games bit in this book. But proving her genius, she made it fresh, new, and oh-so-much better! Less brute strength and dumb luck, the new games require a sharp mind just to stay alive in the arena. From a poisonous fog to viscious baboons to one hell of a lightning strike, it’s not just their opponents who are out to kill them. And the end of the book. Oh, my. Yeah, it’s a cliffhanger, but it’s brilliant.