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Catching Fire

Suzanne Collins

Key Facts

Important Quotations Explained

Study Questions & Essay Topics

full title ·  Catching Fire

author · Suzanne Collins

type of work · novel

genre · dystopia; young adult

language · English

time and place written · Connecticut, United States, in the mid- to late-2000s

date of first publication · September, 2009

publisher · Scholastic Press

narrator · Katniss Everdeen narrates as the events of the novel occur.

point of view · Katniss tells her story in the first person and mixes details of her personal history in as she describes events that are presently occurring. She mostly describes events objectively, but often she’ll also imagine what other characters must be feeling.

tone · Mostly stoic, but occasionally very emotional

tense · present

setting (time) · An indeterminate time more than one hundred years in the future. The novel specifically centers on the 75th anniversary of the Hunger Games.

setting (place) · Panem, the country created after the governments of North America collapsed, and a tropical island in an undisclosed location

protagonist · Katniss Everdeen

major conflict · Having angered the Capitol at the end of the previous novel, Katniss struggles to keep her loved ones and herself safe as an undercurrent of rebellion grows in Panem and she finds herself fighting for her life again in the 75th Hunger Games.

rising action · Katniss deals with threats from President Snow as she tries not to inflame tensions in the districts and begins to learn about an underground rebellion growing across Panem.

climax · In the arena, Katniss helps bring down the force field after realizing there is some sort of plot in motion by the other tributes involving her and Peeta.

falling action · Katniss learns the full details of a vast plot to overthrow the Capitol that she has unknowingly become the symbol for and finally understands the meaning of several unexplained events.

themes · The Duplicity and Power of Appearances; The Struggle for Control; The Ignorance of the Privileged

motifs · Clothing; Secrets; Mouths

symbols · Mockingjay; Katniss; Bow and arrows

foreshadowing · The refugees from District 8 show Katniss the cracker with the mockingjay and say Katniss must not know about any of it; Plutarch Heavensbee shows Katniss his watch with the vanishing mockingjay on its face and tells her “It starts at midnight”; Cinna rigs Katniss’s wedding dress to burn away, leaving her in a mockingjay costume; Wiress and Beetee point out the chink in the force field during training; Beetee makes a fuss about not losing his wire in the arena

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