The Hunger Games are over, and all Katniss wants is to go back to her normal life. But the government isn’t happy with her – not least because she’s unwittingly become the face of the rebellion. As unrest grows in Panem, Katniss begins to realize that surviving the Hunger Games was only the beginning.
Becky and I both loved The Hunger Games, and were on the edge of our seats waiting for Catching Fire to come out. It did not disappoint. I can’t say much without spoiling it, but I can tell you that Collins’s prose and plotting are as brilliant and gripping as always. The Hunger Games was full of fascinating, morally-murky characters who remain just as fascinating this time around, though the characters introduced in this book are eager to give them a run for their money. Katniss remains brilliant and badass and utterly socially inept. Panem gets even creepier and more intriguing. I could not put this book down.
All that said, I do have two very brief quibbles. One is that the love triangle between Katniss, Peeta, and Gale is played up a lot in this book, and I can’t stand love triangles. That’s a personal preference (or un-preference), though. The other is that Collins glosses over major scenes a few times, summarizing them in a paragraph or two instead of showing us the dialogue, action, and emotions that are going on. It would be one thing if these were minor, unimportant slice-of-life scenes, but they’re pivotal moments. It’s bizarre, since Collins is usually such a flawless writer, and goodness knows Scholastic has given writers a few extra pages to fit everything in in the past (*coughHarryPottercough*).
Still, these are the faintest of objections to an otherwise incredible book. Collins maintains her perfect average here at Active Voice, as Catching Fire gets five cupcakes. (Psst! Suzanne! We’ll give you six next time if you get the third book out fast!)