Oh, what fun! Reading the second part of the Hunger Games trilogy, Catching Fire in just around 5 hours... Super fun. Though not as good as the first book itself, and starting on a sloppy love story theme filled with sentimentality and all such emotional stuff, this book did good for itself.
Its anyone's guess that Katniss will be safe, but I was dying to know if Peeta will live too, and if so, what would be the twist in the plot that will ensure this. Also, by the time I was done reading 60% of the book, I was also hoping that Finnick lives too, for himself, and for some drama between him and the audience in the third book. By now, Gale is beginning to be a little of a wimp with not much meat in his character, so I am guessing his is going to be a better role in the third book.
I like how these books are progressing. Some drama including romance and family sentiment at the beginning, some meat about the fights and television program related stuff at about 30%, the real games by 40%, alliances forming by 50% and half the tributes dying by 60%, and the games themselves ending by 90% giving plenty of time and space for the reader to gather what will follow in the next book, and what has happened in the games really. Its almost like a template. :)
I also like the style of writing in these books. Very simple language enabling a fast reader to finish the book in one sitting, giving lot of room for imagination for the reader about the arena, the districts, the scenery around Panem and Snow, and just enough romance to keep the reader engrossed. I also love the introduction of new words , the words mutt, district, Snow, mockingbird, jabber - none of this would mean the same anymore.
Its like the author is thoroughly influenced by Rowling's style of writing and plotting the story. There is an evil force which is tormenting the entire known population with some followers, there are a few people who want to rebel but cannot do so because of situations, there is a setting for some brave people to show their courage to the rest of the population which pines all its hope on one person who happens to be in that situation due to some co-incidence and does not really know how to live up to the image created for him/her by the suffering people but still manages to live up to it, loved ones get killed , their memories torment the living hero and how in the end good triumphs over evil.
In any case, the one reason I will rate this book 4 and not 5 on 5 is because of its slow start. I'd love to give it .5 stars lesser than what I gave the first book. It almost made me cry in disappointment till about 40%. I was literally begging for some action.