Thursday, March 15, 2012

Catching Fire - Re-read

In this sequel to The Hunger Games, Katniss is forced to live with the consequences of her actions within the arena.  While starving to death is no longer an issue, violence, anger, rebellion and the emotional fallout from her pseudo relationship with Peeta, are.

The first 1/3 of this book are rather slow going.  If you are reading the books back to back, this is a difficult change of pace from the action of The Hunger Games.  Instead of defending her life from other competitors, we watch as Katniss attempts to reconcile with Gale and deal with not only an ever increasing violent presence within District 12, but also with her own expanded understanding of just how bad things are under the rule of the Capitol.

The action eventually picks up again and the reader is left questioning each character's motives and wondering what exactly is going on.  The plot holds many twists and turns and things do not become clear until the last few pages.  As the middle book in a trilogy, Catching Fire does a fantastic job of leaving you yearning for the third book.  The first time I read it, this was infuriating.  The second time around it is less so (mostly because the third book is waiting for me rather than forcing me to chew my nails for months wondering what is to become of my beloved characters).

Teaching Notes:

Age: 13 and up
Gender: Both
Sex: None
Violence: Lots.  Multiple Beatings, Fights, Murders.
Inappropriate Language: None
Substance Abuse: Continued heavy drinking by an adult character.  One instance of heavy drinking by a teen character (followed by a painful hangover).


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