(Warning: Review contains slight spoilers for The Hunger Games.) The second in a triology, Collins continues the story of Katniss and Peeta. The first dual victors of the Capitol's Hunger Games, the plot picks up with them living in the victor's village. Katniss struggles with her relationship concerns between Gale and Peeta and finds herself bored without the constant struggle to survive. However, the Capitol is not pleased with her and it doesn't take long for action to begin as tension rises in District 12, most of which is centered on or around Katniss. Like the first book, conflict rises gradually, and steadily increases throughout the book until the end. And, as in most "middle books" of any triology, it does its job in continuing the story to prepare the reader for the last book. I found the book to be equally well written and just as captivating as The Hunger Games. I read it straight through in two days. If there is any real criticism of this book, it is in the critical thinking skills of Katniss. Chronologically she is a year older, yet these skills as they pertain to relationships do not improve as one would expect. And this encroaches slightly on her ability to determine any revenge the Capitol will take on her and what role she may be playing for any rebellions afoot. In this regard, the reader would like to slap some sense into her. But it doesn't minimize the well written tale, again respectfully read by McCormick. The description of violence is somewhat more graphic than The Hunger Games, but still handled in a way that young adults should be able to manage. I recommend this book as highly as The Hunger Games and even suggest that if you haven't read either them, buy them both together. The cliffhanger at the end of Catching Fire will make you impatient for August 2010, the scheduled release date for the third book, title as yet unknown.
There's no doubt that she made a good go at writing a sequel that stands up to the first. Personally, I think it pales in comparison to the first, BUT it does make me think that there is the potential for a very good third book.
Both my sweetheart and I were happy that it didn't get hopelessly bogged down in the Gale/Peeta drama. Simply avoiding that pitfall is a mark of success as far as I'm concerned.
I think the plot was a bit choppy, but I also think the flaws are easily forgiven. Certainly, neither of us were bored. For the sequel to a young adult novel that could have completely degenerated into a teen love triangle, the author deserves credit for keeping her focus.
If you liked the first book, "The Hunger Games," you will like the sequel. It keeps up the gut-wrenching tension despite its predictability, just like the first book. Although most of the new characters introduced are not as engaging as those we met in book one, you will grow to like some of the returning characters even more.
Katniss continues to be a bit slow to figure out things that will be immediately obvious to the reader, and the ending is easy to see coming. However, it's hardly an ending at all; the last sentence may as well have been "To be continued..."
I still think Carolyn McCormick's narration is a bit too chipper at times, and Katniss in particular sounds entirely too breathlessly girlish when she's fighting for her life.
The narrator. I read the first book but my preference is to listen to my books as I'm a busy person. The voice of the narrator threw me off. I felt like she was reading the book to me as most narrators tend to bring you into the story with them. I had trouble getting into the story as her voice and the way she read the story was very distracting. She improved with the second half of the book, and I hope she is better with the third book but I'd have not chosen her in the first place. I enjoyed this book as it gets into the heart of the struggle that the people go through. I held my breathe wondering if
Katness and Peeta were going to make it to the end. All in all I felt that this book was an excellent stand alone book and not just a bridge to a third book. I look forward to getting into the last installment in this series.
I've recently returned from living and working in Alaska. I, my beautiful two dogs, and wonderful three cats travelled together.
After the Hunger Games which was a one of a kind work, both sequels Catching Fire and MockingJay are interesting reads but fall short of the thrilling, imaginative caliber of Hunger Games. They would be more enjoyable if one did not compare them to Hunger Games.
Enjoyed the first book. Second didn't appeal to me the same way. Third is mostly about the nightmares, the kisses, the nostalgia and was a big let down for me. Instead of elaborating on the war against the capital and uncovering the actors that double crossed her, the lead character wallows in pain, suffering and self pity. The author could have taken the subsequent books to a new level instead of using the same old formulas over and over again.
Say something about yourself!
The narrator is wonderful! I love Carolyn McCormick! Her reading is so clear and her voice and inflection is so deliberate and appropriate.
Mockingjay! Because its the 3rd in the series.....and Carolyn McCormick also narrates that one :) . From another author, I would have to say Delirium and Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver, they are great audiobooks.
I appreciate the mood change you can feel of the story through her narrating.
Of course this book makes me cry! But I also laugh of loud because Haymitch and Katniss' interactions are priceless!
I'm an Audible editor, and I think this quote sums it up: "A voice is such a deep, personal reflection of character." - Daniel Day-Lewis
I almost quit on this book after a completely uneventful and meandering first half. Then the second half kicks in and saves the entire thing. Collins's vision of Arena #2 (yes, there's another arena...you didn't think they were going back in?) is fantastically diabolical, and at least this time, Katniss is with a handful of people who have her back, rather than just a wet blanket (I mean, baker). I understand that the first half of this book sets up the rest of the events that follow in the remaining one and a half books, but I feel like it could have been done better. The ending is rather abrupt and caught me off guard, and the narrator continues to make me hate the main character (which, please believe me, I don't enjoy doing). I’ve gotten this far…might as well finish off the trilogy.
It's enough already with the whining of the main character. I enjoyed the first book, pretty unique premise and was well done. The second book is just basically a rehash and repeat of the first, I felt a little cheated. Don't think I'll try the last one, at this point don't really care what happens to the main character (or any one else in the story).
I will try not to give anything away and simply say that I'm not as enthralled with this one. I cannot believe in the story, in the decisions of the characters, in the logical progression - I expected more sooner, or if not more, than an explanation of why the characters would choose the way that they did, especially the main character and the rest of the tributes.