Thursday, December 12, 2013

GRAB(ook) Club: "Catching Fire" by Suzanne Collins

(Warning: This post contains spoilers!) 

Having plowed through "The Hunger Games" earlier this fall, I was compelled to keep going through the next two books in the series.

So, since I had already read "Catching Fire," the second book in the trilogy, I figured I might as well take part in this latest edition of the GRAB(ook) Club -- even though I had to Google a plot summary to refresh my memory a bit (hard to flip back through the book again when you read it on an e-reader...!).  ;)  I have to admit, books 2 & 3 kind of run together for me;  I had a bit of a hard time remembering exactly what happened in what book. (I already provided a mini-review of sorts of both books in early October.)

While Katniss & Peeta emerged triumphant from the Hunger Games, they quickly find out that winning isn't all it's cracked up to be. The people have taken courage from Katniss's bravery and defiant attitude in the Games;  rebellion is in the air, which lands Katniss in hot water with the evil President Snow. The President cooks up something special for the 75th Hunger Games:  imagine an all-star Survivor competition, featuring past winners of the Hunger Games -- including, of course, Katniss & Peeta -- in yet another fight to the finish. Who will emerge victorious this time around? The book ends... with a cliffhanger!

My question: 
I haven't seen "The Hunger Games" movie and am not sure I will see "Catching Fire." Whether or not you have seen or think you want to see the movie, is there a particular scene you would love to see come to life from the book, or wonder how they will pull off?

My answer:

I asked this because while overall, I'm lukewarm as to whether I see the movie or not, I AM curious as to what Katniss's dress-turned-Mockingjay costume would look like and how they would pull off the transformation scene, cinematically. :)  (Unfortunately, the book shows that fashion truly can be a matter of life or death...)

I also keep trying to picture the setup of the arena in my head, particularly the opening setup. I think I have it figured out, but I'd like to see how the filmmakers interpreted it.


After you answer my question, please click over to read the rest of the book club questions for Catching Fire.  You can get your own copy of Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins at bookstores including Amazon.


  1. I have actually seen the first movie and read the series before the movie came out. I enjoyed the movie and realize that they must condense the action to fit into the proscribed time. I don't think I'll be watching the second movie simply because scenes that I thought were important were left out from the first movie and probably will be in the second. But if I were to see the movie, I'd love to see how the film depicts the Victory Tour scene in District 11.

  2. I've seen both movies and read all the books. I enjoyed the first movie, although I didn't think it was fantastic. The shaky camerawork to disguise the violence annoyed me. The second movie, I think, was much better - they got the majority of the book elements in. It was a 2.5 hour movie, but I was never bored. I felt like some stuff was missing, but that it was stuff that made reading the book more enjoyable...not necessarily stuff that was vital to the plot.

    The Mockingjay dress was pretty cool and the arena set up was semi-obvious, once they showed an overview. In the book, it was hard to get the image of the theme without someone describing what it was (trying to avoid the spoilers!), but once you got a wide angle shot in the movie, you were able to see it easily. And it made the contestants seem kind of slow and stupid for not recognizing it. Anyway, first movie = OK, second movie = quite good.

    The only thing I wondered how they were going to do in the movies was how they would make the flaming outfits seem realistic. They were OK, but it was clear to me that it was CGI - something was slightly off for me. But the Mockingjay dress - that one was better than some of the other efforts.

  3. Ha -- I was about to say the same scene. I was supposed to see the movie near American Thanksgiving, but the theater was sold out. Huge disappointment. And I really only wanted to see the movie with my sister. So now I don't know if I'll actually go and see it in the theater or wait for it to come out on DVD. But I would like to see the dress change.

    For what it's worth, I didn't think the first movie was all that great. It left out a lot of the book, and I had to fill in the blanks for Josh because it was sort of like getting a synopsis of a book via movie vs. truly getting a good taste of the book.

  4. Late to the party, but just finished the triology and knew I missed the GRAB(ook) Club discussion... So thought I would come back and join in! :)

    I have seen the first two movies now and echo others' sentiments. I almost always like the books I read better than the movie versions, but still enjoy seeing how they can be transferred to the big screen. I do recommend them, but appreciate how it can be weird to see another's interpretation of something you might have envisioned differently.

    Because of the hype, I have, for better or worse, always pictures Katniss as the woman who plays her in the movies, but I had not seen pictures of the actors who played Gale and Peeta. So I found that really interesting to see who they chose for those roles, as well as Haymitch and others.

    Thanks for sharing! :)

    I just wrote this post after finishing Mockingjay: