Catching Fire

Just finished reading Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins. This is the first book I’ve read in a long time where I felt I needed to read the next one straight away. And that’s what happened:  I’m onto Mockingjay already.

I finally upgraded my old Nokia and now have a smart phone, more on that later, and downloaded a fantastic audio book app called Scribd. And that’s how it started.

Listening to Catching Fire en route to work, I managed to finish it in about a week, and it gave my tired eyes a nice little rest.

Catching Fire is better paced than The Hunger Games, and unlike the film version, is deeper, more rebellious, more heart-wrenching. Whilst the film version portrays Katniss as a pawn played by the Capitol, highlighting the female lead’s malleability; the book presents Katniss as head strong and capable, emphasising the manipulation of the Capitol. I suppose that’s a little more difficult to film than to write.

Bringing in previous victors seems like a natural progression, Collins couldn’t really pull the same thing off twice. Using the older and more experienced victors, and comparing them with Peta really showed how pure he is, something that I don’t really recall in the film.

Naturally, there are details missed out in the film that makes the build up more intense in the book. You make links as you read, trying to figure things out before Katniss, ultimately making it an enjoyable read.

The narrator of the audio book makes a good effort with the different voices, and really puts emotion into the words, and I really found myself being affected by events and speeches – something that does not usually happen when I read.

A lot better than the first book of the trilogy, miles better than the film, whereby the relationship between Katniss and Peta felt contrived. The book, however, gave hope, that there were some real feelings between the two, feelings that could, somehow, lead onto something tangible – if they weren’t supposed to kill each other.

Definitely worth a read, whether you actually read it or listen to it via an audio book. I’m already completely pulled into Collins’ Mockingjay, Panem is so interesting, Katniss so riveting. I haven’t seen the third film yet, I’m just looking forward to reading how the story continues.

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