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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tremendous
This book continues shortly after The Hunger Games finishes. Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark are back home in District 12 but things are not all joy for the victors. Katniss receives a visit from the President of the Capitol warning her that he knows all of her secrets, and during the Victory tour that she and Peeta must convince the other districts that their love is...
Published on July 24 2009 by Steven R. McEvoy

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This second started going downhill
Firstly, I must say that I really thought the first book wonderful and exciting, and I had high hopes for the 2nd. Secondly, I read all three, and I would like to point out a few things that are left out in comments like "I loved this, a must-read!"

The first book, as I said, was great. It was well-paced (didn't feel rushed), surprising (waiting to see what...
Published on Feb. 18 2012 by elXi


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tremendous, July 24 2009
By 
Steven R. McEvoy "MCWPP" (Canada) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This book continues shortly after The Hunger Games finishes. Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark are back home in District 12 but things are not all joy for the victors. Katniss receives a visit from the President of the Capitol warning her that he knows all of her secrets, and during the Victory tour that she and Peeta must convince the other districts that their love is real. It is even announced on TV that their wedding will be hosted by the Capitol.

However, all is not well in Penam. The last time there was a rebellion, District 13 was nuked from the map, and The Hunger Games began to remind the districts of their submission and subjugation to the Capitol in this new country of Penan in the ruins of former North America. The Capitol each year forces each of the 12 provinces to draw names of a male and female tribute. The tributes are drawn from all people between the ages of 12 and 18. They receive training, are assessed by the game masters and then the betting begins. The games will be televised and are required viewing for the whole nation. In book 1 Peeta and Katniss won the games, but angered many in leadership in the Capitol.

Now is the beginning of the preparation for the 75th Hunger Games. It is a Quarter Quell; each 25 years the rules are modified. In previous Quarter Quells, on the 25th Anniversary of the rebellion, each district had to vote on what child to send to the games. In the second Quarter Quell, on the 50th anniversary each district had to send two male and two female tributes to the games and this time it is announced that the Tributes to fight in the games will be drawn from previous victors only.

Katniss panics at this news; less than a year ago she had to fight to the death with 23 other youths. Now she must return to the Arena and the death and carnage it will entail, for she is the only female from district 12 to be a victor. And she will have to enter the arena either with Peeta or Haymitch, her former co-winner or her mentor. And this time the Capitol will not allow two winners from a district again. Her world has just been turned upside down. As she prepares to train to re-enter the arena, she must decide who and what she is willing to fight for and this time maybe die for.

This book was so intense I could not put it down. I read it in one sitting, devouring it, then went back about a week later and reread it more slowly in case I missed anything. The cliff hanger is so extreme that even though it is more than a year away, I cannot wait for book 3 to be published. This book and the first The Hunger Games are excellent fictions and great summer or fall leisure reading.

(First published in Imprint 2009-07-24.)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic sequel manages to carry on the excitement!, July 21 2009
By 
Vanessa M. Dow "Vanessa D" (Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I forced myself to read this book slowly, over the course of three days, because I just couldn't stand that it had to end. WOW. Given how much I loved The Hunger Games I didn't think it was possible for Catching Fire to live up to my expectations, but it exceeded them. In all my speculations on where Collins was going to take Katniss and Peeta, I didn't even get close. I'm going to try very hard to stay away from any spoilers here.

First off, this book managed to continue the adrenaline level of the Hunger Games far more successfully than I would have thought was possible. It does start off a little slowly, with Katniss and Peeta preparing to take their victory tour around the districts. The pace kicks up a few notches when they discover that their act of contempt toward the Capitol has had more of an effect, in more places, than they could have imagined. Katniss needs to decide- will she attempt to protect herself and her family, or allow herself to become the figurehead of a much-needed rebellion?

Peeta a much fuller role in this book. Now that he realizes Katniss was only pretending to be in love with him in order to win the Games, how will he treat her? As they find themselves together in a new fight for their lives and the lives of their families, Katniss and Peeta must rely on each other again. The tension between Katniss's desire for self-preservation vs. her desire to protect her friend is almost unbearable, especially as she is again serving as the narrator and the reader is hearing her thoughts.

I have so much admiration for Collin's writing. When I am reading this book, I am actually with Katniss as she's going through her struggles. One of my favorite parts of The Hunger Games was the way it played with my mind and my sympathies, and the same type of conflict goes on in Catching Fire. I couldn't just pick one character to cheer for. I wanted Katniss to be OK, but there were so many others that I just knew couldn't make it. Beyond the excitement, Catching Fire explores deeper issues like social responsibility and the effects of normalized violence on teens and young adults. Honestly, the book is still playing in my mind weeks after reading it.

If, for some reason, all the rave reviews for this book and its prequel have failed to sway you, I will add my voice to the clamor. READ THIS BOOK! PREORDER THIS BOOK! I cannot recommend Catching Fire enough.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Rushed, and an ending that didn't feel like it fit the series., March 30 2012
I enjoy the first two books. I felt the third was rushed. It definitely took me longer to read, as it had less of my interest and attention. I didn't feel satisfied at the end. I felt upset and like I got hooked for a disappointment. The third book didn't seem to fit with the others, and I wonder if Suzanne rushed this last one. I was disappointed!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This second started going downhill, Feb. 18 2012
Firstly, I must say that I really thought the first book wonderful and exciting, and I had high hopes for the 2nd. Secondly, I read all three, and I would like to point out a few things that are left out in comments like "I loved this, a must-read!"

The first book, as I said, was great. It was well-paced (didn't feel rushed), surprising (waiting to see what will be next), and emotional (who of the two District 12s will die?).

The second book, however, started off by picking up the loose ends from the 1st book, which is reasonable. Except, I felt like a lot of new detail was synthesized on the spot, and rather clumsily (forgive me, but that's how I felt). A major event (not to spoil I won't write it down) that starts the action-ball rolling feels unnatural and unexpected in a sense of "well, here we go again".

For what I liked, it's the "good stuff" and drama from the 1st book, which lives up to the 1st book; it felt repetitive, however, and didn't seem have much to offer (again, this is my point of view, you might disagree). I felt hanging in mid-air, rushing through the pages not because of excitement (as it felt rather obvious that there is going to be a way out), but just to see how the problem will be solved.

Also, the lack of development of the new characters in the book, and how no-one vital to the "plot" was accidentally killed (which, in my opinion, would have made the story so, so much better!) was unfortunate.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Missing pieces but still worth a read..., July 25 2011
It was a modest finish for the Hunger Games saga. Since the novel is written in the first person, any action that occurs while Katniss is unconscious or missing from the event is not fully told. This results in a disjointed novel with large portions of the plot experienced in waiting as Katniss experiences them. On one hand, it is true to the series as a whole. It worked well for the previous two novels because Katniss was a main participant in all that occurred. However, in this book, one cannot help but feel cheated out of important events that would have resulted in a well rounded story.

Nevertheless, as a fan of the Hunger Games saga, this book is well worth the money and time. The reader just needs an avid imagination to fill in the rest of the blanks.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Successful Sequel, April 15 2010
By 
Mireille Jaillet (New Brunswick Canada) - See all my reviews
The first of this series was amazing, I mean a true work of art. The storyline is wonderfully original and I've been telling everyone I know to read it. Catching fire has all the elements needed to make a true wonderful story. There is romance, self-discovery, action, thrill, violence, a truly evil nemesis, an incredible twist ending and all wrapped up in one, it is truly a satisfying read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE RETURN OF THE GLADIATORS..., March 11 2012
By 
Lawyeraau (Balmoral Castle) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
Oftentimes, sequels to a bestselling book disappoint. This sequel to the "Hunger Games", however, the second in the trilogy, is just as good as the first, as it seamlessly picks up where the "Hunger Games" left off. The author is a born storyteller, and she weaves a story that, while simply written, is thematically complex.

The author continues the story of Katniss Everdeen, who along with the other tribute from District 12, Peeta Mellark, has survived the "Hunger Games". While on a whirlwind, governmentally mandated victory tour, Katniss and Peeta see portents that all is not well in Panem politically and signs of unrest and dissatisfaction with the despotic rule of President Snow are becoming all too apparent.

Suddenly, the stakes are raised, and the victorious tributes find themselves challenged in ways that they could never have anticipated. In fact, the author has come up with another ingenious plot that will keep the reader riveted. I could not put the book down, reading it in one sitting! So, again I find myself, running down to the local brick and mortar bookstore to buy the third and last book, which I simply cannot wait to read!
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26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent. Just didn't like it., Aug. 30 2010
By 
L.Clair (New York, USA) - See all my reviews
Because I've been waiting months for this book, I'd promised myself I'd read it slowly and savour it, becuase after I'm finished there's no more. As it turns out, I read all of Mockingjay the day I received it in the mail. As expected, it was excellent. As dreaded, I didn't like it.

Suzanne seems to be one of those writers whose books get better and better with each installment. I thought Catching Fire was better than The Hunger Games, and Mockingjay is written even better than Catching Fire. After the end...you just have an unquenchable hunger for MORE that will never be satisfied, but that's okay, because it's the mark of a good series.

Despite all that, the problem with Mockingjay, (for me at least) is that it wasn't any fun to read at all.

Sure, it's intense, suspenseful, poignant, and it cuts to the action faster, but I missed Peeta; Katniss's usual spirited and brave demeanor was replaced by a "Who cares?" attitude, and while it might be completely justified, it wasn't any fun on the reader's part; the whole book hangs a downcast, depressing and overly serious tone; I hated the anticlimax.
In lieu of spoilers, I will not mention names, but a certain important character was somewhat randomly dropped off at the end. We weren't given any closure about his relationships with his fellow characters. May or may not leave you feeling cheated.

Another reviewer, on amazon.com I believe, called this book a work of "nihilistic anti-war propaganda;" in other words, Collins is biased into thinking that war is the most disgusting, horrible, and awful thing that ever existed. And while she's entitled to her opinions, especially when they are well-supported, it's untactful to try and force her readers into seeing things her way, instead of giving them the facts and allowing them to form their own opinions.
This seems to be the reason for much of the unnecessary tragic events that happen in this book, and why it's so depressing: the author is putting out propaganda to 'help' us see how very very bad war is, instead of giving us a balanced view of the reasons people go to war, and why it may or may not be the best way to solve a conflict.

Now, the end. We never expected a completely happy ending for a series like this one. We would have enjoyed a bittersweet ending thoroughly. But I think the downer ending was just overdoing it. Did the author purposely twist the ending to a level of heartwrenching sadness? Probably. Was it necessary? Hmmm.

So, the writing was intelligent and unique to its author. The plot was (excepting the anticlimax) tense, winding, and fast-paced, the action neverending. The characters, especially Katniss herself, were depthened even further. Despite that, I didn't like it, I'm sorry.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointment after the first 2 excellent books, Dec 4 2013
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This last book of the trilogy was a let down. Constant self questioning on the part of the heroine (instead of letting the reader do so), silly plot turns, and a speedy 5 page 5 year ending contributed to this disaster. Best to just read the first two fantastic books and imagine your own final saga.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect ending to a unique series, Jan. 9 2012
I see many people complain that the ending was unsatisfying, but I personally loved it. For an original and epic story such as this one, the ending was just right. It was sad, of course, as most war stories are. But there was also a large element of hope, as the characters we've grown to love throughout the series find a way to live with the immense sorrow and ordeals they have suffered, and build a new life, with love and wisdom. This is only described briefly in the last few pages of the book, but it is enough.

In my opinion, had the ending been different (read: more optimistic and all-appealing), the series would not have had as much power, and as big an effect on the reader. These were very emotional and intense stories, so it only makes sense that the ending is as realistic as possible, without the absence of love and hope.
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Catching Fire: The Second Book of The Hunger Games (Audio)
Catching Fire: The Second Book of The Hunger Games (Audio) by Suzanne Collins (Audio CD - Sept. 1 2009)
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