Title: Catching Fire

Author: Suzanne Collins

Date Finished: 22/05/12

Re-Read? : First time read

Challenges? : No

Overall: 5/5 – absolutely fantastic

As you may remember, I read the first book in the Hunger Games Trilogy back in March and decided to wait a while before moving onto the second, as I enjoyed the first so much and wanted to savour the experience!

It was certainly worth the wait.

I thought that perhaps this second book would be a bit of a disappointment after the riveting first instalment, as the main part that occupied me was the actual tournament…however (and I’m not going to spoil it for the people who haven’t got this far yet) people who’ve read this one know that I wasn’t disappointed in that area!

It was interesting when my sister asked me “which book did you prefer, 1 or 2?”, as I answered with “neither”.  What I meant was that I saw the second book as just a continuation of the first, not a different story.  This was good and it felt like the second volume of the story rather than another book about the same characters.

Again the plot is the supreme highlight of the novel.  After the first hundred pages, I simply couldn’t put it down again, just like the first one.  I read from pages 200 to 480 (the end) yesterday!  Sadly at the cost of my revision :S  I can only say, don’t pick up this if you’ve got lots of things to do!

Again, the characters were good but still not great.  They do just seem a bit too unrealistic to me.  However, you feel for them and spur them on regardless.  Certainly, they are all vivid and memorable which is great as there are often so many to keep track of.

I have to echo myself yet again when I say that Collins’ prose is perfect for the job it does – makes you want to keep reading.  In my post on the first book I said:

There is something extremely readable about Collins’ prose – people I know who certainly aren’t readers have been reading this book as obsessively as I did and I think that is really special.  It brings me so much pleasure to see people who I know think reading is a chore and a waste of time opening up their bags and taking these books out.”

This applies again to Catching Fire and I assume it will to Mockingjay as well.  Just as the ‘Harry Potter years‘ seem to be closing, it is encouraging to see a new literary phenomenon taking their place.  And I also have to say I hope the films are as good as the books – I haven’t even seen the first film yet!!

Overall, another brilliant, readable and thrilling book from Suzanne Collins and I would seriously recommend this trilogy to everyone.  It is taking a lot of willpower for me not to pick up Mockingjay and carry straight on with the story, but I am determined to have a break (even if it is very short) so that I will appreciate the last book even more.