Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Posted October 1, 2011 by Lucy D in Book Reviews, Urban Fantasy / 0 Comments

Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2)

ORDER A COPY: Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games)

Publisher: Scholastic
Publishing Date: September 1, 2009
Hardcover: 391 Pages

Rating: 4 stars

Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark won the annual competition described in Hunger Games, but the aftermath leaves these victors with no sense of triumph. Instead, they have become the poster boys for a rebellion that they never planned to lead. That new, unwanted status puts them in the bull’s-eye for merciless revenge by The Capitol. Catching Fire maintains the adrenaline rush of Suzanne Collins’s series launch.

Katniss and Peeta survived the Hunger Games, but there is no life of leisure for these winners.   The President is not happy about their little ploy, and he’s holding Katniss personally responsible for embarrassing the Capitol.   He has no qualms about taking his unhappiness out on all of District 12.

Worse, the rebels want to use Katniss as their symbol of the rebellion, putting her further under the scrutiny of the Capitol. 

Sadly, the nightmare is not over for Katniss, Peeta and Haymitch.  The Capitol is planning something special for this year’s 75th Hunger Games.  Something that will teach the people once and for all that they can’t fight the Capitol’s will.  This year’s contestants will be drawn from the winners of the prior Hunger Games and make no mistake, this time there will be only one winner!!

We are again be drawn in the horrors of the Hunger Games.  After all the trouble they have caused, the Capitol wants to make sure that the Katniss and Peeta don’t succeed this time. 

When Katniss and Peeta return to District 12, it is not the beginning of the happy ending.  Their romance is being scrutinized, as are the everyday happenings of District 12.  Rules that have been ignored for decades are being enforced.  Anything to bring pain to Katniss and her people.  Katniss can’t decide whether she should be with Peeta or Gale, as each will be hurt by her decision.

When Katniss and Peeta begin their champions tour of the Districts, they see first hand the oppression of the Capitol which is only stronger now since the failure at the Games and the rising of the rebellion. 

Then comes the shocking announcement that to celebrate the 75th year of the games, they will be choosing from the prior winners, Katniss and Peeta know that their chances are slim.

Again, a gripping tale of survival against all odds.

I tell him everything.  About the president’s visit, about Gale, about how we’re all going to die if I fail.

His face sobers, grows older in the glow of the red taillights.  “Then you can’t fail.”

“If you could just help me get through this trip—“  I begin.

“No, Katniss, it’s not just this trip,” he says.

“What do you mean?” I say.

“Even if you pull it off, they’ll be back in another few months to take us all to the Games.  You and Peeta, you’ll be mentors now, every year from here on out.  And every year they’ll revisit the romance and broadcast the details of your private life, and you’ll never, ever be able to do anything but live happily ever after with that boy.”

The full impact of what he’s saying hits me.  I will never have a life with Gale, even if I want to.  I will never be allowed to live alone.  I will have to be forever in love with Peeta.  The Capitol will insist on it.  I’ll have a few years maybe, because I’m still only sixteen, to stay with my mother and Prim.  And then…and then…

“Do you understand what I mean?”  he presses me.

I nod.  He means there’s only one future, if I want to keep those I love alive and stay alive myself.  I’ll have to marry Peeta.

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