Catching Fire - Suzanne  Collins
I JUST finished the third book, and I realized that I haven't given a review for this book yet.

I'll begin by making an observation that slowly occurred to me as I continued reading this book: the book that came before this one had a plot to it that could have been incorporated into this one and the third book. In fact, now that I look back on the third "book," I think that with decent editing skills, the second and third book could have been compressed, and with the destruction of the really plot-useless first book, we would have one book called..

The Hunger Games.

Ah well, I guess authors love rolling in that trilogy money nowadays. Well, onto my opinions regarding this book.

Like I hinted at before, some actually pretty plot-heavy stuff happens in the course of this story. There's questions of loyalty, back-stabbing and a decent love triangle that finally comes to fruition during the course of this story. Everyone seems to be a real and breathing character, for the most part.

A major problem that has surfaced that began to really show in this book is the problem of point of view. Now, I don't really know WHY Collins settled on such a limited point of view as that of a single teenage girl in a world this sweeping - especially when she REALLY sees so little of it - but I wish I could have told her to write this a bit differently.

I think I would have just told her to go back in time and write Battle Royale, which I think I'll go out and read after seeing the movie of it. My impression of THAT particular version of teenage murderfest added with social commentary is that it really does feel like Lord of the Flies with a real brain to it. After having read just a few pages from that OTHER book that Collins claims to have had no knowledge of (let's all spend a moment here to collectively roll our eyes), I could read how this type of a book could be written correctly. Point of view certainly isn't EVERYTHING, but frankly I felt that the limited POV of Katniss has really crippled this book. I really wanted to be in the head of Gale or Peeta at times, and it would have stopped the nonsense of Katniss getting constantly knocked out and then awakening somewhere else. It gets tiresome.

I suppose that's just one reason why Battle Royale is described as a violent epic, and this one gets to be the book written by the lady who didn't even have the balls to admit to being heavily inspired by a great foreign work. Seriously, Collins?

This may be the best book in the series, mainly due to the insanity of what roles everyone must play in these new Games, and what they mean for the future of Panem. I find that when Katniss stops her internal dialogue regarding her own situation CONSTANTLY, we get some interesting plot developing.

If I could only stop from wanting to smack our brooding protagonist in the mouth. Damn girl, it's going to be alright if you'd quit jumping to conclusions all the time.

My final verdict is that you will have to, unfortunately, sit through that first book to read this one with a full understanding of what's going on, but if you like some political intrigue that's kind of just dumbed all the hell down and a bit of a superficial bulls*** relationship drabble, you may just enjoy this book and want to read the next one.

Leveling with everyone, I canNOT understand the hype this book series is getting. The writing is pretty amateurish, with the added hobbling effect of it having being written from such a poor choice of point of view and that it will always be compared in circles of actual lifelong readers as Battle Royale's slow younger sister. Hell, this really downright useless series seems to have been written for a slower crowd who cry when they see how many pages Battle Royale has in it, coupled with the fact that Battle Royale has the black mark on it of not being written by an AMERICAN.

I wish I didn't know that Collins is one rude lady, then I could be willfully ignorant, like the zealous defenders of this series.