Tuesday, August 24, 2010

This is what happens when you challenge evil dictators...

Note:  Chasing Fire is the sequel to The Hunger Games.  Therefore, this review WILL contain spoilers for The Hunger Games.  If you haven’t read it already, check out my review here.  Otherwise, read on!

Chasing Fire shows what happens when you make an evil dictator mad.  Katniss and Peeta both survived the Hunger Games, a development that has never happened before.  They really didn’t mean to incite a rebellion...it just kinda happened.  And now that they’re out, they need to stay alive, and keep their families alive, too.

We start out preparing for the Victory Tour.  Another horrible manipulation of the government, the survivor(s) of the Hunger Games get paraded around to the other districts, the populations of which have to celebrate their victories.  Of course, by celebrating their victories, they are also celebrating the murder of the children that they sent from their own district.  So it’s not exactly fun for anyone involved.  But as our heroes tour, an unsettling trend shows.  The districts support them.  There’s revolution brewing, and Katniss and Peeta are in the middle of it.

Of course, they had no interest in starting a rebellion.  Peeta just wanted to keep Katniss, who he loves, alive.  And Katniss just wanted to keep herself alive, and keep her family alive as well, and the best way to do that was to stick with Peeta.  But, unfortunately, people will interpret actions however they want.  So now, they need to keep up the appearance of being in the first stages of being in love.  While not rubbing it in the face of the government, and the President.

And just as they’re wrapping up their victory tour, they need to prepare to coach the next two tributes from District 12 through the hell that they just finished.  Again, tributes from District 12 almost never survive (in fact, there is only one other living tribute from District 12, and he hasn’t exactly coped well), so the two children that they would become attached to would almost certainly die.  And if they didn’t, the idea that they were purposely inciting rebellion would be even more affirmed...there’s not really any way out of this.  Plus, this is the 75th Anniversary of the Hunger Games, and that always means they’re extra special.

The review pretty much has to end here, though, because about now the first of several twists happens.  I don’t want to give anything away, but things are about to get much, much harder for our heroes, their families, and District 12 as a whole.  The writing remains fantastic, the romance stays low-key, and the emotional turmoil stays ramped up to 11.

Highs:  Great plot twists, interaction between Katniss and Peeta

Lows:  A little too much ‘which one will she pick’ between Peeta and Gale

Verdict:  Great thriller book, and great set-up for book #3

Further Reading:  Mockingjay, Graceling

No comments:

Post a Comment