Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Catching Fire Review

Possibly the most eagerly awaited Young Adult novel this year, Catching Fire, part two of Suzanne Collins' epic Hunger Games Trilogy, comes out on September 7th.

Picking up a few months after where book 1 left off, Katniss and Peeta are about to embark on their victory tour, having survived the Hunger Games, but all is not fine in Panem. President Snow is furious at the survival of two Tributes, and dissenters in the district are rising up - the rebellion against the Capitol is beginning, and the star-crossed lovers from District12 are its accidental figureheads.

From the opening page, I found myself enthralled, unable to put the book down, with twist after twist hitting you on an almost page by page basis. This is storytelling at it's very best, and frankly this book is so visual, its as if you are watching a movie unfold on the page.

Not in a long time has a book like this captured my imagination. For anyone who thought Hunger Games was powerful, this is just something else entirely, it takes the world of the Hunger Games, and makes it even more terrible.

We get to see the other districts, we get to really explore these other characters, who until now we have only seen as brief tableaux as we follow Katniss in The Hunger Games, in their full potency, and realise there is much more going on than what meets the eye.

If Book 3 is even half as good as this, this trilogy will go down as one of the great distopian stories of all time, and I for one, cannot wait, because Catching Fire is the best book, bar none, I've read this year.

James Gordon