Title: Catching Fire
Author: Suzanne Collins
Reading Level: Young Adult
Location: YA Collins
This review discusses some of the major plot points of the first Hunger Games book. If you have not yet read The Hunger Games, skip ahead to the bottom line.
Katniss and Peeta return home from the terrors of the Hunger Games with the Capitol upset about the “act of rebellion” that allowed them to both escape with their lives. When Katniss effectively ended the Hunger Games with the deadly berries she did not expect her rash decision in the arena to inspire uprisings in the districts. However, when she embarks on the victory tour with Peeta they see the tension and unrest on the faces of those that come to applaud their success. Katniss herself has trouble discerning her own reasoning behind her actions on that day. Did she do it because she loves Peeta or does she really love Gale? Was it in defiance of the Capitol? All Katniss knows is that she must convince her fellow citizens that she never intended to defy the Capitol or her life, and the lives of her family and friends, will come to a gruesome end.
I don’t want to give anything away about the storyline of this amazing sequel. My brief summary only encompasses about the first thirty pages of the book. After that, the action really picks up and there are some truly surprising plot twists. I continue to love the character of Katniss. She is a mentally and physically strong, intelligent young woman but she continues to be inexperienced in dealing with her emotions, especially when it concerns her romantic preference. I definitely think fans of the series will be separating into Team Peeta and Team Gale after this sequel. The story was exhilarating and well crafted. Suzanne Collins continues to build on the world of Panem making it even more intriguing than in the first installment. The only drawback to this book is its spectacular cliffhanger ending which leaves the fans in agony for another year. The next book should be another action-packed, suspenseful, but potentially heartbreaking journey.
The Bottom Line: Catching Fire was a wonderful sequel to the critically acclaimed Hunger Games. It is intriguing, suspenseful, and action-packed with a little romance sprinkled in for good measure. Fans will not be disappointed with this sequel and will be clamoring for the next book due out next year. Team Peeta all the way!