Still hungry? Listen to more Hunger Games.
©2009 Suzanne Collins; (P)2009 Scholastic, Inc.
"Collins expertly blends fantasy, romance and political intrigue (so who needs vampires?)." (People Magazine)
"Catching Fire not only lived up to my high expectations, it surpassed them. It's just as exciting as The Hunger Games, but even more gut wrenching, because you already know these characters, you've already suffered with them." (Stephenie Meyer)
"...enough action to please Hunger Games fans and leaves enough questions tantalizingly unanswered for readers to be desperate for the next installment." (School Library Journal, starred review)
(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.
A good read, but not as captivating as the first in the series. I am intrigued to finish the trilogy and to discover if the story continues on its trajectory. Note - thanks to Carolyn McCormick for dropping that baby voice she used when speaking for Katness in the first book. She's a teenager, not a toddler.
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).
Catching fire starts a blaze from the beginning. I couldnt wait to download it and wished it never ended. The second book was even better then the first. Suzanne you are brilliant and I am sure you will not let us down in the final book. I want more more more.
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
Five-star novel, five-star movie, five-star audiobook -- except for one thing. The narrator is the same one who brought The Hunger Games down a notch. But never mind -- the writing, the story, the characters, they will get you past it.
The best thing about Catching Fire, the thing that every sequel struggles with, is how to reprise the best thing about the original in a fresh and original way. The best thing about The Hunger Games is the hunger games. it takes a while for Catching Fire to get there, but the last couple of hours, once the 75th hunger games take shape, is the best part of the book.
Not that the getting there is any tribulation. If The Hunger Games, for an adult looking for subtext and as a lesson to its younger audience, is a primal scream against sending our kids off to die in war, the first half of Catching Fire takes the theme of economic, political and social elitism to the next level. And this came several years before the 1% and the 47% became catch phrases.
Do I have a choice? If I want to finish the trilogy, I have to listen to her one more time. She is a tad better here than in the first book, but that may be just because I was ready for her this time. She still brings the whole thing down, totally miscast as she is. Fortunately, I'm not a fan of James Patterson or that kind of writer, so I will likely not be running into McCormick again.
The big moments are all still there -- Gale's whipping, learning the details of the Quarter Quell, the wedding dress twirl, Cinna's beating. But the unexpected one, the one that really hits home, is the story of Haymitch's first time in the games.
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (sci-fi, fantasy, action, romance) - This book has it all! It picks up seamlessly at the ending of Book 1 and doesn't skip a beat before it takes you on a thrilling new ride! Some turns are expected, but then there's the twists...and the unexpected ending.
I think I might be in love with Gale...
NARRATOR - I have to agree with other reviewers that her voice is too mature for the role of Katniss, but give her a break. She can't help her voice, and she does a good job.
OVERALL - I think everyone - men, women, young adults -- would really enjoy this series. There is violence but no sexual content, and I don't remember any bad language.
This is the second book in the "Hunger Games" trilogy, and it tells what happens after Katniss and Peeta defy the Gamemakers and wind up both surviving. Needless to say, the President is not pleased, as their win has fueled unrest in the other districts. Although Katniss and Peeta are themselves pawns when it comes to the bigger picture, Katniss is the one who is scapgoated. She barely has time to see her family and friends back home, before she's thrown into the arena for a second round of the Games. This time she intends to keep Peeta alive, but as it turns out, her fellow contestants have their own agenda - and it's not as straightforward as Katniss assumes.
The second Hunger Games is equally, if not more, suspenseful than the first. Personally, I had a hard time believing one person could take that much physical and psychological punishment and still emrge halfway sane, but hey, this is fiction. And Katniss does begin to show signs of post traumatic stress syndrome.
I would have liked Katniss to be able to have one scene where she gets to enjoy her victory, or at least some of it. Or some scenes with her mother, sister and Gale that wouldn't result in her death/torture if she said one wrong thing, just to have some character development. On the other hand, this world's one of unrelenting grimness and fear, so it might detract from the atmosphere.
compelling, rebellion, suspenseful, enjoyable.
Nearly anyone. I don't think she's necessarily a bad narrator, but in this case she didn't have any sense of the characters she was playing.
Although I thoroughly enjoyed the story, and I have previously read the book, the narration by Carolyn McCormick made this listen almost unbearable. She has turned Katniss, a character with profound personal strength, who had to provide for her family at the young age of 13 or 14, into a whiny, simpering basket case of a girl you want to give a good firm slap. Instead of introspective pondering about the significance of events unfolding before her, this Katniss seems hopelessly lost in self doubt, self pity, and self loathing. I was taken aback at how the narration could so change a character. I don't think Carolyn McCormick really has any grasp on the characters she was reading, because I feel like she read an entirely different book than I did.
"Just doesn't work for me...."
This is clearly popular to many people but I found myself drifting off and not listening at all to the performance.
It is too over-elaborate for me. The basic storyline was good for a long as I listened but it really didn't grip me.
Sure, the narrator was fine, it was more the content that I was disappointed with.
Didn't really get far enough before I gave up.
"Initial reservations overthrown within minutes!!!!"
I'd seen the film of Hunger Games and heard the books were good but as they are technically kids books (apparently) I wasn't sure I'd like. I was also not sure about the performer as sometimes american accents can spoil a book for me (nothing against Americans but you know how an audio can be made or broken by the reader!). Needn't have worried as a few minutes in I was hooked! I loved how well rounded the characters were across the 3 books - everyone has their flaws. Everything has consequences for all the characters, but not in a preaching and moralistic fashion. I really, really unexpectedly enjoyed all three audios, and was sad when it ended.
Since reading the first book I thought I should continue the series, in short there’s less action as the first however more time is placed into character development which is surprisingly addictive to listen to. I would definitely recommend
"Catch Fire? Certainly."
As you'd expect, this is a fantastic listen and you'll find yourself, as I did, praying for traffic in the mornings just so you can keep listening; but I personally found the first installment in the trilogy better written.
Far from disappointing, the second book in the Hunger Games trilogy lives up to it's name; it's full of suspense, "rolling stone" like momentum and there really isn't a dull moment so I would definitely recommend the listen if you enjoyed the first book.
The narration by Carolyn McCormick is outstanding and her voice now feels like an old friend; having listened to the first two books in the Hunger Games series back to back.
Ultimately, this title was a credit well spent!
"great follow on"
I only listened to this book. I though read the last book i really enjoyed the print version.
There were many as the story was unpredictable and interesting turns
Initially i did not the narrater, l found the pace too fast and her voice too old for the character. After a while I adapted and enjoyed her style.
I like to make my stories last for the long drives I do, however I found myself listening in several other opportunities
I enjoyed this book its surprises, its twists and turns. Although a young adult book its style is intersting for us older readers
"A Great Sequel"
In Catching Fire Katniss decides that she’d like to start a rebellion, with little thought for how things might turn out. (Immaturity on steroids.) I should think she’ll be forced to learn her lesson by the end of the trilogy – Suzanne Collin’s doesn’t sugar coat her plot lines.
The big surprise for me was that our characters end up back in the arena again. My reaction? “Didn’t I just read this book?” The arena serves a purpose but I had hoped this novel would take a more creative path, and I didn’t get to see nearly as much of the districts or their peoples as I wanted too.
It was interesting to see how Katniss starts to ally herself with Peeta as Gale is left behind in District Twelve. Katniss respect Gale, but during the few moments he gets page space he comes across as angry and political. Peeta’s steady, smart and caring (and learning to tell her ‘no’) in Catching Fire and he sort of won me over.
The cliffhanger ending made reading this book worth it and ensured that I will be picking up the final instalment in the Hunger Games trilogy.
"Amazing Story and the naration was full of energy."
The story itself and the naration. Its like listening to bed time stories all over again.
When President Snow showed up at Katniss' house.
The scene I enjoy the most was when Peeta and Katniss watched the recording of 2nd quarter quell finding out about Haymitch's game. But actually there are lots of scenes that I did enjoy like when Peeta and Katniss were walking at the town centre finding out that Gale were being whiped and Katniss ran to his rescue, the tour to district 11, the anouncement of the 3rd quarter quell and the reaping day and a lot more.
This is a must lietened book. Listening to it is like going back to your childhood hearing stories that take you away to a different world.
"Another brilliant & addictive piece"
I love this trilogy and have collected the books in all formats, paperback, kindle e-book & audio, as well as having the film on blu-ray.
Covering a wide variety of social, economical & political issues, as well as having the added edge of believability in this age of reality television, The Hunger Games has me hooked from beginning to end no matter what format i use. (i have the series in paperback, kindle e-books & audible audiobook)
The writing itself is gripping, engaging and fast paced and the narration flows very well.
The characters are well rounded and the relationships between them are strong and well developed.
I have been listening to audiobooks from a very young age and although i have my old favourites that have grown up with me as well as some new favourites, this series definitely ranks in my top 5 listens.
I am fairly new to dystopian fiction and haven’t read many in books in this genre but i have compared this trilogy to my other favourite dystopian trilogy, Divergent by Veronica Roth.
I am huge fan of the 'Young Adult' genre, although the genre title always amuses me as you couldn't find another category that spans a much wider customer base than the title suggests.
From Harry Potter to Twilight, Narnia to Divergent this series holds its own in a very competitive genre and will be a firm favourite with readers of all ages.
This is my favourite book of the trilogy, though I did enjoy all the books...
The narrator was easy to listen to and really bought the story to life for me.
"Hunger Games pt 2 - still enthralling"
Listened to this one as soon as I finished book 1 - as the film isn't out yet, this was a different experience in trying to imagine the new characters and arena. Loved the new arena and continuation of the story - holds the attention right to the surprise ending.
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