Audiobook Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Posted January 7, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | | 8 Comments

Audiobook Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne CollinsCatching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Series: The Hunger Games #2
Narrator: Carolyn McCormick
Published by Scholastic Press on September 9, 2009
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult
Format: Audiobook
Length: 11 hours, 41 minutes
Source: Library
Goodreads

Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games. She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive. Katniss should be relieved, happy even. After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale. Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be. Gale holds her at an icy distance. Peeta has turned his back on her completely. And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol - a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she's afraid she cannot stop. And what scares her even more is that she's not entirely convinced she should try. As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol's cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever. If they can't prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.

In Catching Fire, the second novel in the Hunger Games trilogy, Suzanne Collins continues the story of Katniss Everdeen, testing her more than ever before...and surprising readers at every turn.

After the extraordinary first book, I couldn’t imagine the second being as riveting or action packed. While it lacked the excitement and suspense, it more than made up for it in political intrigue and angst.

The situation
Katniss may have outsmarted President Snow by finding a way for both she and Peeta to win the Hunger Games, she’s fully aware that he’s unhappy about it and a day of reckoning will come. It’s not if but a question of when.

What works
We forget how young she is and Katniss is ill prepared to handle the emotions involving the two men in her life, Peeta and Gale. She’s trying to sort out her feelings while having to continue to play the part of a girl in love with her Games partner. I loved how she handled both and her way of thinking through the situation. There was an element of authenticity that elevated it beyond the normal young adult angst, which normally drives me nuts.

There’s an interesting twist in the story that plunges everyone into turmoil again. I didn’t think anything could rival the horror of a the Hunger Games but life got extremely complicated and dangerous for the courageous and intelligent Katniss.

Narration
I read the first book and opted to listen to this one and it was a great decision. While the narration at first seemed to be stilted, I soon adapted to the cadence and it ended up being pitch perfect for the story.

The bottom line
The mystery and suspense of this story more than compensated for the absence of breakneck action found in the first. Be forewarned that it has a cliffhanger ending, though I’m still trying to decide whether I’ll wait for the movie’s release before reading it. It’s more than a worthy follow up in the trilogy, just a different kind of excitement. My heart still raced and my spine tingled.

 

Jonetta + Cat

 

 

 

About Suzanne Collins

In 1991, Suzanne Collins began her professional career writing for children’s television. She worked on the staffs of several Nickelodeon shows, including the Emmy-nominated hit Clarissa Explains it All and The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo. While working on a Kids WB show called Generation O! she met children’s author and illustrator James Proimos, who talked her into giving children’s books a try.

Thinking one day about Alice in Wonderland, she conceived the story of Gregor the Overlander, the first book in her five-part fantasy/​war series, The Underland Chronicles,which became a New York Times bestseller.

Her next series, The Hunger Games Trilogy, is an international bestseller. The Hunger Games has spent more than 260 consecutive weeks/​more than five consecutive years to date on The New York Times bestseller list since publication in September 2008, and has also appeared consistently on USA Today and Publishers Weekly bestseller lists. In 2010 Collins was named to the TIME 100 list as well as the Entertainment Weekly Entertainers of the Year list.

Lionsgate released a film adaptation of THE HUNGER GAMES on March 23, 2012, directed by Gary Ross who also shared screenplay credit with Suzanne and Billy Ray. Lionsgate will release the second installment THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE worldwide on November 22, 2013. The film is directed by Francis Lawrence, from a screenplay by Simon Beaufoy and Michael DeBruyn. Lionsgate will release THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 1 on November 21, 2014 and THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 2 on November 20, 2015, also directed by Lawrence.

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Jonetta

Co-Blogger/Full Time Reviewer at The Book Nympho
I LOVE reading and am just crazy about so many series and writers. I’m open to exploring new authors and genres and appreciate those who not only write well but can deliciously craft a character and a tale. Your suggestions for new authors and titles are very much welcomed.

I also love to talk about books. There’s nothing more exciting than to finish a great story and cover it A to Z with other people, exploring different perspectives and points of view. So, if you see something on my shelf you’d like to talk about, send me a message and we’ll talk!

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8 responses to “Audiobook Review: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

  1. totally agree on the narration aspect. I picked up on it though eventually and it’s now one of my fav’s despite the fact that I feel like the narrator’s voice may be a bit too “old” it still works

  2. Now that I think about it my experience was similar to yours. I haven’t read the books in print however. Indeed Catching Fire seemed to have a slower tempo but still it kept me on the edge of my seat. I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it as well. 🙂

  3. I completely agree with the narration of this series in the audiobook version. I felt a little off kilter when I first started listening to them, but once I got used to it, I found it to be a perfect match for the series. I listened to the audiobook versions for the entire series and it’s one I adore. Great review!