Book of the Week-Catching Fire

In spirit of the release of Catching Fire in theaters tomorrow (or for some of us, viagra 100mg today), pharmacy I decided to do an oldie for the Book of the Week.

Okay, I also haven’t read anything new this week. I know. Its awful. I’m trying to catch up, and I’ll have book reviews up soon, I promise! I just gotta get back in the groove!

But until then, let’s talk about Catching Fire, and why I think its the best book in the trilogy. Don’t forget to see the movie this weekend; it is SO amazing. You can read my review of the movie here.

Catching Fire  by Suzanne Collins

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, Dystopian

Part of a Series?:

The second novel of The Hunger Games Trilogy

You May Like if You Liked:

The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth, The Legend Trilogy by Marie Lu

Age Recommendation:

14+

Plot Summary:

From Good Reads:

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.

The Review:

This is the strongest book in the trilogy, easily. We’ve had the world established in the first novel. We know Katniss and Peeta and the world they live. We understand the cruelty of the Capitol and the heads of Panem, and President Snow and the Gamemakers. We know all this. The Hunger Games is a great book, something that grabbed me from the very first page.

But Catching Fire takes it to a whole new level. For one thing, the entirety of Panem grows in this novel, which opens our eyes even more to the cruelty of President Snow and his government. The Victory Tour shows us all the various different districts, and I love that. I think that this is where Katniss really begins to see what effect she had, and that her effect isn’t necessarily a bad thing. All she’s ever known is District 12 and the small amount of time she spent in the Capitol. Seeing the other districts only fires her up more.

I also love that we meet so many new important characters in this novel too like Johanna and Finnick and Plutarch, and people like that. Not only does it open us up to new victors besides Haymitch, but we see how the Games have effected other people as well. Plus its good to meet characters that you can get attached to like Katniss and Peeta. My favorite character in the entire series is Finnick Odair and he’s introduced in this novel.

The Games! The Games in this novel just takes it to a whole new level too. It was scary enough in the first book, but at least Katniss seemed to feel almost at home. She knows woods; she can’t hunt and she can take care of herself. Not only is she in the unfamiliar territory of the jungle but the arena also has that clock twist to it, which is awful! A new horror every hour? No thank you! Crazy killer monkeys, jabberjays that sound like your loved ones being tortured and poisonous fog? Its insanity.

I think the most important part of this book though is Katniss’ transformation. She goes from being focused only on herself, her familiy and her own survival (which is NOT a bad thing at all) to being concerned about so much more. She becomes concerned with Peeta, and Haymitch, and her prep team, and Cinna. She even begins to be concerned about the other tributes, even though they’re trying to kill her. Remember who the real enemy is.

Lastly, I think this book has one of the BEST cliffhangers ever. I remember reading it and wanting to throw the book across the room. How could this possibly be happening? What? What?! WHAT? I couldn’t handle it. Luckily enough for me, Mockingjay was coming out within a month, and I didn’t have to wait too long to find out. But an epic cliffhanger, and they nailed the cliffhanger in the movie, just an FYI.

Rating:

5 out of 5 Stars

Recommended or Not?:

Of course. And I recommend seeing the movie too, which is out in theaters tomorrow!

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I hope you enjoyed this impromptu, last minute Book of the Week, and that you’ll head out to see the movie and that you enjoy it just as much as I do!

Happy Hunger Games and May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor!

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Spoiler Free Movie Review!

I am so incredibly lucky that I was able to attend the Catching Fire fan camp and red carpet premiere in Los Angeles. You can read my recaps of Day One, troche Day Two and Day Three. I met so many awesome cast members, and fans, laughed my butt off, got NO sleep whatsoever, and made a ton of memories. But the best part of the whole experience was being able to see the movie early.

And now that the movie is out in TWO days (or tomorrow, if you’re seeing it at the night showings like me!), I want to share my review. As always, its completely spoiler free!

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire 

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Rated:

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some frightening images, thematic elements, a suggestive situation and language

Directed By:

Francis Lawrence

Cast:

Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Haralson, Donald Sutherland, Elizabeth Banks, Lenny Kravitz, Sam Claflin, Jena Malone.

Find the rest on IMDB here.

IMDB Movie Synopsis:

Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark become targets of the Capitol after their victory in the 74th Hunger Games sparks a rebellion in the Districts of Panem.

Worst synopsis ever. LOL.

We’re into the deeper world of The Hunger Games trilogy. Fresh from her time in the Games, Katniss Everdeen is under pressure. She’s deeply affected by the Games and the deaths she’s responsible for. She has created a buzz with her defiance of the Capitol, and now she has to pay for it, and convince the Districts that she is deeply in love with Peeta, and help to bring down the rebellion stirring in the Districts to keep her family safe. When that doesn’t work, she and Peeta are thrown back into the games, and this year’s Games are going to be much different.

My Review:

We’ve all come to expect that movies will never be as good as the book. This is true. Its hardly EVER that a movie is better than a book.

But I’ll tell you one thing: Catching Fire comes extremely close!

I was SO incredibly impressed with this movie. It is definitely a movie that is made for the fans. It was an emotional roller coaster from beginning to end. I was constantly crying. I was crying because of heartbreak. I was crying because I was laughing so hard. I was crying because there were just moments that were so beautiful, I couldn’t handle it. It was exciting and scary, even though I knew exactly what was going to happen, and there were several moments in the movie where I forgot to breathe normally or I’d gasp, very loudly.

This movie takes the very exciting, tense, emotional book and translates it on the big screen nearly perfectly. I’ve never seen a movie follow a book so well. There were things left out, of course, but those things made sense to leave out, in the grand scheme of things. They got all the important moments of the book, and there were so many direct quotes, you could almost quote alongside the movie, which I did a few times.

They captured so many of the moments that were important to ME, as a fan. I was looking back at the Top Ten Tuesday I did last week which was the top ten things from the Catching Fire book that I wanted in the Catching Fire movie, and they showed every single one. I was so excited about this. They really did such a great job of recognizing the important moments, and the little things they did add, like what’s going outside of the Games, and Snow’s granddaughter, really helped to enhance the story and build it up for Mockingjay Part 1.

I loved each and every tribute. The difference between the first movie and the second movie is that a lot of the tributes in this movie become incredibly important, especially in Mockingjay. We care about Finnick and Johanna and Mags and Wiress and Beetee. So their casting was incredibly important and I think each and every single one of them nailed it, perfectly. Sam Claflin was an amazing Finnick, and no body else in the world could have played Johanna except Jena Malone. They adapted these characters perfectly into the movie. I can’t emphasize enough how much it impressed me.

The actions scenes were amazing! Katniss was wicked with her bow, Finnick drove me insane with excitement when he fought with his trident. There was so much romance in this movie, and each and every kiss between Katniss and Peeta (and there’s enough to satisfy all the Katniss-Peeta shippers out there!) was beautiful and scorching hot. I had to fan myself sometimes.

OH! And the cliffhanger. The cliffhanger of Catching Fire the book is one of the craziest cliffhangers I’ve read in a book, and it is so gut wrenching and scary and emotional and they took that short ending and made it so incredibly beautiful and it left me breathing so hard and it made me so excited and impatient for Mockingjay.

Ooh, and look for the Mockingjay movie symbol at the end. Perfection!

Simply, this movie was made for the fans, and it was absolutely incredible. I think that even reluctant fans, or people who aren’t into the Hunger Games, could see this movie and love it. It was just that great. It had action and romance, and so many tense moments and it made you laugh and cry, and have a good time. And I definitely canNOT wait until Mockingjay Part 1 next year!

Rating:

I do NOT give this out lightly, especially for a movie adaptation. This is how good this movie is.

5 out of 5

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Don’t forget to check out my recaps of the events! You can also see ALL the pictures from my adventures on my official Facebook page here.

Check back later this week because I *might* have a giveaway coming your way! ;)

Happy Hunger Games and May the Odds be Ever In Your Favor!

Catching Fire Fan Camp and Red Carpet Premiere-Day 3!

Finally! The day I’ve been waiting for!

It was an absolutely EPIC day and I am so excited to share it with you guys.

Day #3: 

5 am: My friend Jade wakes me up. Its time to put all the stuff away, link and get packed up to leave. 5 am is incredibly too early to think about this sort of thing, but somehow I manage to get it done!

6 am: The security guys come around to give us our numbers for the red carpet. I was number 104, which wasn’t too bad actually! We were instructed to come back at 3:30, which was great, because we were all so tired!

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I love that you can see my ticket (the yellow one) from the City of Bones red carpet. I was #2 for that one and was proud of that, and I like keeping it in my phone!

7 am to 2 pm: Sleeping. Eating. Showering. The basic needs of a human being that were ignored in the last two days.

2:40 pm: Arrive in line for the red carpet. Getting really excited because its finally almost time!

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3 pm: Get a call about a job interview for Barnes and Noble. This is completely unrelated to anything to do with Catching Fire, but I was insanely excited, and it put me in a good mood for the rest of the day.

3:30 pm: Head into the fan section. Second row behind the barricade which honestly isn’t that bad. Sure, I would have liked to have been right up against it, but beggars can’t be choosers. And usually the people in the front row are nice. Its a little bit of a give and take. Fandom love

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4 pm: Realize the people in front of us are NOT fandom love people, and are kind of rude. Whatever. Time to do some awesome work, and get my poster signed.

5:30 pm to 8 pm: RED CARPET!!!!!

I saw SO many people.

It was nearly impossible to get pictures with anyone, mostly because the people in front of me, were not really nice. BUT I got my poster signed by SO many people on the carpet, including: Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Donald Sutherland, Bruce Bundy, Stanley Tucci, Stef Dawson, Bruno Gunn, Maria Howell, Amanda Plummer, Megan Hayes and Trish Summerville.

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Don’t ask me which signature belongs to who. I know some of them but most of them, I have NO idea. It was chaos on the red carpet, haha, but the good kind of chaos!

I also, sadly, didn’t take a lot of pictures either because it was SO hard to! But I was glad to get my poster signed. I did get a few pictures! I think I was too busy trying to get autographs and ogling celebrities to actually take pictures with them!

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The back of Liam Hemsworth’s head. I couldn’t get one of him turned around!

Bruno Gunn who plays tribute/victor Brutus

Bruno Gunn who plays tribute/victor Brutus

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I also saw other celebrities like Sarah Hyland, Joe Jonas, and even some Laker players, like Xavier Henry and Steve Blake!

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Laker player Xavier Henry!

There were also some past tributes from the first movie that hit the red carpet too, like Dayo Okeniyi (Thresh), Isabelle Fuhrman (Clove), and Jacqueline Emerson (Foxface). Even though they all die in the first movie, they’re part of the family, and they’re part of the beginning of this beautiful movie experience.

Oh and I got an extra poster signed by Francis Lawrence, the director, and Jena Malone, Sam Claflin and Stephanie Leigh Schlund. I think a giveaway may be in order *wink wink*

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8:30 pm: MOVIE TIME!!!!!!!!!! We get free popcorn and drinks and head into the most ginormous theater in the history of all theaters. Seriously. Its huge. Not really in a good way. I like small theaters, for sure. This place was…uncomfortably big haha. BUT I was lucky to see the movie early so its all good.

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11 pm: Get out of the movie. I have literally cried from happiness, from heartbreak, from laughter. This movie is absolutely brilliant. I won’t say more than that because I’m doing a review but ohmygod, the movie was SO good. So happy and satisfied, I can barely handle it.

12:30 am: Finally make it home. Am so happy to see my house, to see my own bed, and especially to see my boyfriend. I am so excited for all of this, I literally fall asleep without even trying.

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Thank you for following me all weekend, in the journey of the Catching Fire Fan Camp and Red Carpet Premiere.

If you’d like to see ALLLLLLL the pictures from this weekend (all 114 of them), please check them out on the official blog Facebook here.

Watch out for my spoiler free review soon!

Happy Hunger Games!