Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark are still alive. Katniss should be relieved, but now there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol — a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.
As the nation watches Katniss and Peeta, the stakes are higher than ever. One false move and the consequences will be unimaginable.
First published: 2009 [Goodreads]
I didn’t think I could love Catching Fire as much as I loved The Hunger Games, based on the common prejudice that sequels are often not as good as their prequels. I was wrong, though! Man, was this a good sequel! I’m still on the fence about if I love it even more than The Hunger Games itself, but it’s definitey at least equally amazing. It is proving to be a bit of challenge for me to write this review, though, since, on the one hand, so many people have already read the book, and, on the other hand, I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone who might still want to read it. I’m just going to keep it quite general and short, I think.
It took me a few chapters to really get into Katniss’ story again, but once it grabbed me, it grabbed me good. Before I started reading I wondered what exactly would be the plot of Catching Fire, since so much happened in the first book and to me it seemed difficult to top that. I knew there would be certain concerns about a rebellion, but that’s all I knew. Which was fortunate, since it meant I was constantly surprised while reading. That’s what I loved most about this book: all the twists and turns. It was as if something unexpected happened at the end of every chapter (and there are 27 of them). That’s probably not entirely true, but I gasped a lot while reading this, that’s for sure!
I loved how the book revisited so many of the characters of the first book, and how we got to know them a lot better this time around. So much has changed since Peeta and Katniss won the Games together, not only in the District(s), but also in all of the characters themselves. While winning the Games has technically ensured the victors and their families a lifetime of wealth and comfort, everyone has grown much more cautious and afraid. They all know something is going to happen after Katniss and Peeta’s defiance at the end of the Games, it’s just that nobody knows what that something is. It also made me, as a reader, feel just as suspicious about everything as everyone else. The first part of the book has this sense of foreboding that keeps you on the edge of your seat. And then the shit hits the fan, so to speak, and stuff gets even more tense and page-turny (yes, I just made up that word). I don’t really want to say all that much about the second part of the book, though.
So, let’s just put it this way: this book was really good! The ending included another huge twist, although I did see certain aspects of it coming. I’m really curious to find out what happens next, and I can’t wait to read Mockingjay. However, I’ve also read and heard so much negativity about the third book of the trilogy, so I’m kind of scared as well as excited to read it at the same time. I guess you’ll find out what I think about the last book in due time!