The second book of the trilogy by Suzanne Collins is CATCHING FIRE
ANOTHER PAGE TURNER!!! Often sequels just don’t measure up however I could not put this book down. Maybe because the unusual present tense writing pulls you in and keeps you stuck. The pacing is just as quick as the first book of the trilogy Hunger Games, and the rhythm never flags. Suzanne Collins has the gift of keeping my vagus nerve stimulated. We get to see more of the same characters Katniss, Peeta and Gale and I love that we get to experience deeper emotional interactions between them. Katniss, a year older at seventeen still struggles with her feelings between Peeta and Gale, and hasn’t lost the tendency to be a martyr where their lives are concerned.
(SPOILER ALERT!! If you haven’t read Hunger Games, Do Not Read Further)
The story starts out with Katniss and Peeta making a round of the twelve districts for the celebratory tour for winning the Hunger Game. The rules mandate one victor only, however Kat and Peeta paired up as allies; their strategy of being lovers was a wild success and brought them perks during the game. Due to Kat’s passionate poison berry offering at the end of the game, she has unwittingly manipulated the outcome so that she and Peeta both survive. President Snow took her showy display as a threat against the Capitol and lets her know that by her actions, she has initiated a spark of rebellion in the districts. To lay that spark to rest, she must now prove to all that her love for Peeta was true and not just a strategy for winning the game. If she doesn’t, all relatives and friends in her circle are in danger of being killed, especially and including Gale and Peeta.
Katniss hates the Capitol and everything that it stands for with the fancy painted embellished people, decadent ways, and murder for the sake of entertainment. They seem disinterested that people in the districts suffer under the heavy handed rule of the Peacekeepers, live in squalor and struggle with constant hunger. Should Katniss take her family and run? Or if there really is a resistance beginning, should she take part? For the moment the decision is taken from her as President Snow decides that the Quarter Quell, a glorified version of the games held every twenty-five years, will feature tributes that have won in previous hunger games. The nightmare for Katniss Everdeen begins all over again…
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