Mark Reads ‘The Hunger Games’: Chapter 13

In the thirteenth chapter of The Hunger Games, SERIOUSLY THIS IS GETTING UNBEARABLE COULD THERE PLEASE BE A MOMENT WHERE WE CAN JUST REST AND SHIT. Intrigued?  Then it’s time for Mark to read The Hunger Games.

NO. REALLY? A WALL OF GODDAMN FIRE? THIS IS JUST ABSURD RIGHT NOW. WHAT IS GOING ON.

The world has transformed to flame and smoke. Burning branches crack from trees and fall in showers of sparks at my feet. All I can do is follow the others, the rabbits and deer, and I even spot a wild dog pack shooting through the woods. I trust their sense of direction because their instincts are sharper than mine. But they are much faster, flying through the underbrush so gracefully as my boots catch on roots and fallen tree limbs, that there’s no way I can keep space with them.

When I read that there were footsteps before the fire, I assumed that other tributes were trying to burn Katniss alive. But…I guess this isn’t that much better, is it? Again, WALL OF FIRE.

The heat is horrible, but worse than the heat is the smoke, which threatens to suffocate me at any moment. I pull the top of my shirt up over my nose, grateful to find it soaked in sweat, and it offers a thin veil of protection. And I run, choking, my bag banging against my back, my face cut with branches that materialize from the gray haze without warning, because I know I am supposed to run.

Great. More disaster ahead. If the fire doesn’t kill Katniss, smoke inhalation will.

This was no tribute’s campfire gone out of control, no accidental occurrence. The flames that bear down on me have an unnatural height, a uniformity that marks them as human-made, machine-made, Gamemaker-made. Things have been too quiet today. No deaths, perhaps no fights at all. The audience in the Capitol will be getting bored, claiming that these Games are verging on dullness. This is the one thing the Games must not do.

I should have thought of this. These Games simultaneously oppress and entertain. (And bigotry sells, doesn’t it?) Katniss suspected the berries were poisonous (it was never confirmed if they were), but she forgot to consider the deadly weapons that the Gamemakers could use against her.

I hurdle over a burning log. Not high enough. The tail end of my jacket catches on fire and I have to stop to rip it from my body and stamp out the flames. But I don’t dare leave the jacket, scorched and smoldering as it is, I take the risk of shoving it in my sleeping bag, hoping the lack of air will quell what I haven’t extinguished. This is all I have, what I carry on my back, and it’s a little enough to survive with.

Well, there goes her jacket but not her dignity.

Discomfort turns to distress until each breath sends a searing pain through my chest. I manage to take cover under a stone outcropping just as the vomiting begins, and I lose my meager supper and whatever water has remained in my stomach.

I’m glad that Collins is including details like this, showing that the Game can negatively affect a person’s health like this. Wait…ok, I’m not actually glad that she’s vomiting. I mean that this sort of realism is usually ignored in fiction and in film/TV, but not here. BUT YEAH, I DON’T DERIVE JOY FROM VOMIT. Thanks, guys.

The thing that’s so interesting about all this is that any sort of expectations I had for the Games have all been met or topped in the first few chapters. I don’t know what else Collins has left to explore anymore! Gamemaker intervention, injury, massive death, dealing with dehydration, betrayal, terror…it’s all here. IT’S ALL READY HAPPENEND. What on earth could Collins do now? I mean, short of the remaining Tributes killing each other or dying in the wild, how on earth is she going to carry this narrative any further?

Katniss wonders where the Gamemakers are driving her and presumes it’s a few things: back to where she came from, to a new area that is not familiar, or towards the other players. Basically, NOWHERE GOOD AT ALL.

The fireballs continue to hurl at Katniss and she knows a direct hit is death. But even her quick wits and speed are no match for COLLINS THE AUTHOR.

My muscles react, only not fast enough this time. The fireball crashes into the ground at my side, but not before it skids across my right calf. Seeing my pants leg on fire sends me over the edge. I twist and scuttle backward on my hands and feet, shrieking, trying to remove myself from the horror. When I finally regain enough sense, I roll the leg back and forth on the ground, which stifles the worst of it. But then, without thinking, I rip away the remaining fabric with my bare hands.

I sit on the ground, a few yards from the blaze set off by the fireball. My calf is screaming, my hands covered in red welts. I’m shaking too hard to move. If the Gamemakers want to finish me off, now is the time.

WHAT THE FLYING FUCK IN HEAVEN. Ok, so the first thing I thought of when I read this was that horrible moment in Deathly Hallows when Harry realizes his wand is broken. It’s senseless and it brings with it a pervading hopelessness. When Katniss’s leg and hands are burnt, I don’t think, “WELL, THIS IS EASY TO GET OUT OF.” Instead, I think, “JESUS CHRIST BURNS ARE REALLY PAINFUL AND THEN LAST A REALLY, REALLY LONG TIME.” So what just happened to her is going to affect her performance in the Games for DAYS AFTER THIS. (Assuming they last that long and really now…there are 200 pages left. They aren’t going to end any time soon.)

I’ve been pretty hard on Collins so far, but I have to give her an astral plane high five. This is a huge moment in this book because even though Katniss is obviously going to make it out alive, Collins has made us realize that she can still experience so much loss aside from her life.

Oh, right. We have a name for this moment: SHIT JUST GOT REAL.

I hear Cinna’s voice, carrying images of rich fabric and sparkling gems. “Katniss, the girl who was on fire.” What a good laugh the Gamemakers must be having over that one. Perhaps, Cinna’s beautiful costumes have even been brought on this particular torture for me.

FUCK. How terrible. I didn’t even think of this. I guess the Gamemakers appreciate violent irony. So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something.

Guys, HER HANDS ARE BURNED. How is she going to use weapons? Climb trees? Catch food? This ruins pretty much everything. Good lord.

I don’t quite understand how she gets there, but Katniss arrives at the pool of water she was at before. Actually…is it the same pool or a different one? It’s not really clear, but she takes time to recuperate and check out her leg.

I almost faint at the sight of my calf. The flesh is a brilliant red covered with blisters. I force myself to take deep, slow breaths, feeling quite certain the cameras are on my face.

GREAT. GREAT. JUST GREAT. It hurts even thinking about this. I’ve suffered a few minor burns over the years (BIGGEST KLUTZ IN THE KITCHEN EVER), but nothing like this. It’s a sign how tough Katniss is because I would have been a mess by now.

Though, admittedly, Katniss is actually not her normal self. She doesn’t get a move on immediately and chooses to lounge in the area, consumed by drowsiness and hunger, to rest and get some food. She even doses off briefly, but is awakened by the sound of approaching tributes.

I pick a high tree and begin to climb. If running hurt, climbing is agonizing because it requires not only exertion but direct contact of my hands on the tree bark.

OW OW OW OW OW OW OW OW. NO. NO THANK YOU. But I guess fear can motivate people to look past the pain to survive.

Up in the tree, she spots the six tributes, Peeta included, and realizes there is a very small chance any of them will be able to climb a tree. So she says hello to them.

Now I smile. “How’s everything with you?” I call down cheerfully.

This takes them aback, but I know the crowd will love it.

“Well enough,” says the boy from District 2. “Yourself?”

“It’s been a bit warm for my taste,” I say. I can almost hear the laughter from the Capitol. “The air’s better up here. Why don’t you come on up?”

BLESS YOUR HEART, KATNISS. This is fantastic! But…oh man, this has to be so awkward for Peeta.

We learn two more of the tributes’ names: Cato and Glimmer.

The girl with the arrows, Glimmer I hear someone call her—ugh, the names the people in District 1 give their children are so ridiculous—anyway Glimmer scales the tree until the branches begin to crack under her feet and then has the good sense to stop.

I love the content of this sentence because that name is ridiculous, but did the diction of this piece seems strange to anyone else? It’s far more conversational than anything else we’d seen up to this point. Just a thought.

Katniss, confident that she’s safe from the tributes below, actually prepares to go to sleep in the tree after Peeta convinces the others that she isn’t going anywhere.

I stare into the foliage trying to will myself to rest, but the burns forbid it. Birds are settling down for the night, singing lullabies to their young. Night creatures emerge. An owl hoots. The faint scent of a skunk cuts through the smoke. The eyes of some animal peer at me from a neighboring tree—a possum maybe—catching the firelight from the Careers’ torches.

I’m pointing this out because it’s another passage of Collins’s that I think works really well in the first person present tense. As I said before, I’ve been pretty harsh on her and I want to make sure I do include what I’m enjoying here, and this is one of those times. It’s got a nice rhythm to it.

Suddenly, I’m up on one elbow. Those are no possum’s eyes, I know their glassy reflection too well. In fact, those are not animal eyes at all. In the last dim rays of light, I make her out, watching me silently from between the branches.

Rue.

ARE YOU SHITTING ME???? What the fuck is she doing up there? OH MY GOD WHAT THE FUCK.

How long has she been here? The whole time probably. Still and unobserved as the action unfolded beneath her. Perhaps she headed up her tree shortly before I did, hearing the pack was so close.

For a while we hold each other’s gaze. Then, without even rustling a leaf, her little hand slides into the open and points to something above my head.

YOU HAVE TO STOP ENDING CHAPTERS LIKE THIS. Jesus god in heaven, I don’t want to stop now. DAMN IT.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
This entry was posted in The Hunger Games, The Hunger Games (novel) and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

267 Responses to Mark Reads ‘The Hunger Games’: Chapter 13

  1. Silverilly says:

    It's simple, Mark. You're just going to have to start reviewing five chapters a day.
    Also, WHAT THE SHIT.

  2. Sarah B. says:

    So I'm listening to your Made of Fail podcast at the same time I'm reading this, and it's really weird to hear your voice while reading your recap. Have you ever thought about doing podcasts for/about your reviews?

  3. Beci says:

    RUE!
    that's all i'm gunna say for fear of spoilers

    • Kendie2 says:

      I'm sorry, but even this seems a spoiler. I've not read the book, and I'm only experiencing it through Mark's review. By you reacting so strongly to Rue, it's implied that she becomes integral in the plot. And, by mentioning that saying more would include spoilers, is in itself underscoring the implication.

  4. DameDallas says:

    I don't know what els to do when I read these chapters. They are killing me one clifhanger at a time.

    the first fireball blasts into the rock about two feet from my head.
    Goodness gracious! These Gamemakers need to CALM THE FUCK DOWN and LEAVE Katniss alone. She finally found some freakin' water! Apparently, that is too much of a luxury for the stupid Capitol.

    Perhaps, Cinna’s beautiful costumes have even brought on this
    particular torture for me
    Ugh. EVIL GAMEMAKERS.

    I can’t show weakness at this injury. Not if I want help. Pity does not get you aid. Admiration at your refusal to give in does.
    WHATEVER. SOMEONE HELP HER.

    I like that Katniss does flashbacks to home about her mother and Prim. Even though they may be gruesome flashbacks, they give her strength to get through the impossible.

    I try to make eye contact with him now, but he seems to be intentionally avoiding my gaze as he polishes his knife with the edge of his shirt. Yeah, ya bastard.

    Rue! Yes, be her friend. Fight off those other stupid, lousy heads one by one with Katniss.
    Girl power!

    • Mauve_Avenger says:

      "Goodness gracious!"

      Even without reading the quote above it and seeing the context, my first thought in response to this was "insert Jerry Lee Lewis/Great Balls of Fire joke here."
      Siriusly.

  5. shortstack930 says:

    "the first thing I thought of when I read this was that horrible moment in Deathly Hallows when Harry realizes his wand is broken." OMG ME TOO

    I think the pool of water she reaches is a different one, because it seemed like she was running in the opposite direction from the first one for a while.

    • sableflag says:

      But it totally could have just been the gamemakers fucking with her. She wasn't entirely coherent when she was at the first (same?) pond. I honestly don't remember if this is ever explained, and I don't think it matters THAT much, if at all.

    • bookling says:

      It's a different pond.

    • Mauve_Avenger says:

      The first time Katniss gets water she says it's at a pond with lilies and fish in it, whereas the second time she says she's at a shallow, cool, spring-fed pool with unidentified but edible water plants.

      And she calls the first one a pond a few times and the second one a pool several times, and never crosses terms, so I'm guessing they're meant to be two different water sources.

  6. Sharon says:

    I liked this chapter too! it was pretty extreme, but it works because I really wanted to read more.

    I didn't get how Kantiss got to the lake either, is it the same lake from the start of the games or a new one?

    And OMG the cliffhanger, I couldn't stop myself and read the first lines of chapter 13, I just needed to know what was it that Rue was pointing to.

    • FishGuts says:

      no! you are a terrible person! you must never ever read on! now you must suffer being tied to a chair and a recording of Breaking Dawn being played at you until you are begging for mercy!
      😉

  7. CuriousApe says:

    You are not prepared. At all. Whatsoever.

  8. Flamefire123 says:

    "They're like the worst hipsters ever." I don't know why but that made me laugh so hard.

    It just gets more REAL! It is amazing.

    That'…can't count as a spoiler? No. I don't think so. Logical flow says a story gets more interesting the more you read it, assuming it's a good book. And this is.

    I agree with the tense but I also think Collins does a good job of not making it painfully obvious and it does add tension to this I think. While we know she lives because sequels, the original readers wouldn't and present tense says "I don't know if I've lived through this or not because I'm not in the future either."

    And trust me. I HATE present tense. Most of the time it kicks me out of the story, I spend all my time looking at tense rather than reading. So I was surprised that this got me so intreguied.

  9. Claire says:

    "What on earth could Collins do now? I mean, short of the remaining Tributes killing each other or dying in the wild, how on earth is she going to carry this narrative any further?"

    Let's just say…you're not prepared. You will finish the book and not be prepared. You will finish the next book and not be prepared. You will finish the trilogy and STILL not be prepared, because let me assure you that you will have Hunger Games dreams for WEEKS.

    • Kate Monster says:

      because let me assure you that you will have Hunger Games dreams for WEEKS.

      oh my god so true

      • barnswallowkate says:

        I'm glad I'm not the only one, I thought I was crazy. The worst was waking up in the middle of the night, half asleep, still thinking about the Hunger Games, not awake enough to remember it's all pretend…

    • iva222 says:

      That is so true!! I'm having Hunger Games nigtmares for days now.
      Only the tributes I have to kill are ALL THE CHARACTERS FROM LOST.
      The tragedy!!!! D:

      • Openattheclose says:

        Oh no! Please tell me that Hurley has not been in these dreams.

      • roxywilde says:

        LOLz. If its Nikki & Paolo then it sounds like a lovely dream to me!

      • Jillyweed says:

        Oh, I'll gladly kill Jack for you, don't worry. And, um, I can keep Sayid busy for a couple of hours, just to give you fair advantage of course 😉

        But seriously, these books gave me nightmares like no others, especially cornucopia (the whole idea freaked me out) and something that happens later in series.

      • notemily says:

        A Lost/Hunger Games crossover actually seems kind of… possible! I mean, they're both stuck in an unfamiliar environment with strange shit happening and they can't trust each other and there are walls of fire/big black smoke monsters! A POLAR BEAR SHOULD TOTALLY SHOW UP NEXT CHAPTER

    • Karen says:

      because let me assure you that you will have Hunger Games dreams for WEEKS.
      After I first read the series, I just could not stop thinking about it. It was on my mind all the time. I just got so sucked into the world that Collins created.

    • Eilonwy_Llyr says:

      OMG THE DREAMS. When my mom sent me this book she was all "Read it on your day off, because you won't want to set it down." I was all oooooh -mom-. Then I read it in one sitting. It may have only taken a day to read this book but the dreams lasted a good month afterwards. Holy. Crap.

    • FlameRaven says:

      THIS. Seriously. My friend and I were discussing this site and all the reactions, and she reminded me of something that happens in the last book and I was all "OMG WHAT I FORGOT WTF" and we both proceeded to flip out.

      You cannot be prepared for what these books bring to the table, and that's what makes them so amazing and unforgettable. The story they tell is pretty amazing too, but reading these reviews I am continually amazed at just HOW MANY things Collins throws at us. Just like the last few chapters, when you think she can't go any further… she goes further.

  10. sableflag says:

    I listened to these books as audiobooks, and I literally couldn't stop listening. I put them on my ipod and listened to them secretly during work.

  11. Mauve_Avenger says:

    "This fire is designed to flush us out, to drive us together. It may not be the most original device I've seen, but it's very, very effective."
    I know this is a serious situation, but all I could think of with this sentence is this (and I don't even play Pokemon):

    <img src="http://www.smashbros.com/en_us/characters/images/pokemon_trainer/pokemon_trainer_070927d-l.jpg"&gt;

  12. Anseflans says:

    Mark, we all know you are ahead a couple of chapters. So I´m just going to go astral plane puppy-dog-eyes on you and beg for a second review. Pretty please?

  13. somerdaye says:

    I think I legitimately pronounced a keysmash aloud at the end of this and every other chapter in this book.

  14. monkeybutter says:

    Violence has consequences? Well I never!

    So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something. I love this. It reminded me of Kate Beaton's hipsters. There are always assholes.

  15. Silverilly says:

    Actually, the sequels don't tell us Katniss will live. Sometimes sequels are told in another person's POV, which means that Katniss could very well die in this book and the next one could be told by someone else.

    • Karen says:

      Clearly the next one will be from the point of view of Buttercup, Prim's cat. (LOL. I shit you not. I once came across a fanfic that was from Buttercup's POV. I read a paragraph and nearly died laughing.)

    • theanagrace says:

      Very true! One of my favorite authors, Lois McMaster Bujold has a fantasy series that has each book focusing on a different character or part of the world, so you can't guarantee anything. Everyone should read Curse of Chalion, btw.
      (I haven't read Catching Fire or Mockingjay yet, so for all I know they ARE told by Buttercup, Karen :D)

  16. thefbm says:

    "I guess the Gamemakers appreciate violent irony. So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something."

    Can I just say that that is the greatest thing to come out of your mouth XD

    Yeah I really love Collin destorying her characters to pieces, learned that very early on in this book. I could never imagine the pain it was climbing up that tree.

  17. IsabelArcher2 says:

    "So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something"
    I don't think I've laughed so hard in several months.

    Also, Team Rue, bitches!!!

  18. Treasure Cat says:

    O hai Rue, didnt see u thar in that tree, what is up?

    Things I like about this chapter:
    – how utterly palpable Katniss' terror at the fire is
    – how realistic it is that she burns her hands, because most people would do something like that in the spur of the moment
    – also how realistic it is that she just stays by the pool because she doesnt have the strength for anything else
    – Dear Collins, having Katniss climb a tree with fucked up hands and then talk to the Careers like nothing is wrong, NOW i think she is badass. This is how you do it correctly, you show me how badass she can be through her inate actions and reactions, not through other people telling me or contrived apple shooting. I am pleased.
    – Katniss being all ~high in the tree~ and theoretically safe, but then there are the Careers and Peeta (shit boy still dont know what you're playing at) below her so she isnt really safe at all…tension!
    – Rue turning up, maybe now we get to find out why she is special enough to get a name

    What didnt I like?
    Really it was only the random bit of conversational dialogue Mark picked up on. Its just so out of place with the rest of the narration and makes me cringe.

    Overrall though this is my favourite chapter thus far 😀

    • xkcdhobbes says:

      "O hai Rue, didnt see u thar in that tree, what is up?"
      Her, in a tree 😉
      I liked that the careers fail with a bow, when I read that they had one, I thought "Oh shit!" and must admit I was scared.

  19. Kate Monster says:

    The girl with the arrows, Glimmer I hear someone call her—ugh, the names the people in District 1 give their children are so ridiculous—anyway Glimmer scales the tree until the branches begin to crack under her feet and then has the good sense to stop.

    I love the content of this sentence because that name is ridiculous, but did the diction of this piece seems strange to anyone else? It’s far more conversational than anything else we’d seen up to this point. Just a thought.

    I think this too. It's the "anyway". It sounds like a 15 year old girl writing a note in class to her friends. ABOUT PEOPLE WHO WANT TO KILL HER.

    • 1foxi says:

      LOL :D:D

    • Lily says:

      Well, if you look at it knowing that Katniss is Southern (she is)–well, it makes a little more sense to me from that view. A lot of her weird phrases make more sense after knowing this fact (agg, I sound like I'm stereotyping) and you have to remember that Katniss is 16. She IS the girl writing a note to her friend in class. Except Katniss would never pass notes in class.

    • BradSmith5 says:

      I am going to have to defend Katniss and the writing here. It is never a bad time to question some trivial, ridiculous thing! In fact, it makes me proud to see little Katniss mocking names so well under pressure! 😉

  20. hpfish13 says:

    So, I had been really good about only reading a chapter a day, until the end of this chapter. I no longer could stop reading and finished the whole book last night.

  21. Nibor says:

    My favorite line in the chapter is "ugh, the names the people in District 1 give their children are so ridiculous." True, but I don't think that someone named Katniss has room to criticize what other people are named.

    • thefbm says:

      Haha I thought the same thing when I read that. Siruisly, Katniss, Cinna, Prim, Peeta, Thresh, the one I found somewhat normal is Gale.

    • calimie says:

      I think I'd rather be named 'Potato' than 'Sparkle'. One can save your life, the other…

    • corporatecake says:

      I agreed at first, but then I also thought that it was an interesting look into their naming practices. Katniss, Prim, Peeta, Thresh, those are all acceptable names (even though I found them ridiculous), but Glimmer sounds unusual.

    • Silverilly says:

      Well, a lot of people in our time are named after flowers. Lily, Petunia, Pansy, Rose, Fleur, Lavender, Poppy, Myrtle, Violet . . . and that's just in Harry Potter! 😛
      But a name like Glimmer IS ridiculous. It's like a stripper name.

  22. 1foxi says:

    Katniss giving some attitude in the tree I liked 🙂

    200 pages left, as other people say Mark – YOU ARE NOT PREPARED!

  23. Mauve_Avenger says:

    Also, Katniss is like the person who runs up the stairs in a horror movie. I know that it's her basic instinct and her practice eluding non-human predators kicking in at this point, but who climbs up a tree to escape a fight? Oh, wait, that's right: Michael Bluth.
    <img src="http://thumbnails.hulu.com/4/336/11398_512x288_manicured__Tox5LjCtpUSon-ASF6i1tg.jpg"&gt;
    But then Rue/Buster shows up in a different tree and I'm kinda hopeful that they're going to help each other out, but another part of me just thinks it'll end up something like this:
    <img src="http://www.bite.ca/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/arrested113_photo.jpg"&gt;
    And then Rue/Buster eventually gets punched in the face (though hopefully not for a few more episodes).

  24. mugglemomof2 says:

    "Oh, right. We have a name for this moment: SHIT JUST GOT REAL."

    Ha Ha Ha Ha- you have no idea.

  25. Purreloek says:

    That Glimmer sentence seemed weird to me too, I had to re-read it a couple of times to see if it was grammatically incorrect or something.

    And also OUCH BURNS D:

  26. banabou says:

    NERD ALERT! The first time I read this, Katniss in the tree made me think of The Hobbit, when Bilbo, Gandalf and the dwarves were stuck up in the the trees with all the wargs and goblins below. Does Katniss get rescued by Eagles Ex Machina? Stay tuned!

    • pennylane27 says:

      I hadn't thought of that, but now that you mention it, Gandalf does talk to the Wargs with some attitude too, right? God, I love Gandalf.

    • Openattheclose says:

      I love this comment, especially since I just heard some Hobbit news that made me very happy.

      • pennylane27 says:

        Cate Blanchett?

        • Openattheclose says:

          Yes!

          • pennylane27 says:

            Thought so. I LOVE HER, but I don't remember Galadriel appearing in The Hobbit. Whatever, I absolutely worship her.

            • Openattheclose says:

              Galadriel was my favorite character when I read LOTR and then Cate Blanchett played her and I loved her even more. Yeah, she's not technically in The Hobbit, but I can easily see them working around that. It's supposed to be two parts too, and the second one is apparently dealing with the time between The Hobbit and LOTR.

              Now we just need to get Gandalf, Gollum, and Elrond played by their original actors and everything will be awesome. A Legolas cameo wouldn't be impossible either.

              • pennylane27 says:

                YES YES YES MOAR LOTR
                The movies are what I call perfect book adaptation, so glad that Peter Jackson is directing again. And I definitely need Ian McKellen and Hugo Weaving and ANDY SERKIS OMG and Orlando Bloom is *dreamy* and can we squeeze Gimli into it too?

                • Openattheclose says:

                  YES YES YES! With Harry Potter wrapping up, all of my nerdiness is being directed toward The Hobbit. I cannot wait!

                  I was kind of hoping that they would let John Rhys Davies play Gloin, Gimli's father. I know that's kind of lame, but with dwarves (my spellcheck says dwarves is wrong? I just checked the book and Tolkien uses dwarves and I will too, so there! ) it wouldn't be that far-fetched that he looked exactly like his father.

                  Also, we can't forget Christopher Lee for Saruman!

                  • pennylane27 says:

                    The level of nerdiness in this whole thread is utterly amazing, so to further it:
                    I think that we should totally get everyone from the cast of LOTR to do at least a cameo. It's bad enpugh already that Ian Holm is not playing Bilbo, I can't imagine anyone else doing any of the characters.
                    And John Rhys Davies playing Gloin is the best idea EVER.

                    And dwarves is completely well-spelled in Tolkien lore.

                    • Openattheclose says:

                      Part 2 could totally have Bilbo aging into Ian Holm while raising little Frodo. It would work too, because Elijah Wood doesn't age, and Ian Holm was aged UP for LOTR. Then they can show Frodo hanging with Merry, Pippin, and Sam.

                      Also, the nerdiness is EPIC and I love it.

                    • pennylane27 says:

                      You're my new best friend for that. Also, Elijah Wood doesnt age AT ALL. It's actually kind of creepy.

                    • Openattheclose says:

                      🙂 Aw, yay! Peter Jackson should really be employing us for our wonderful ideas. I wouldn't mind hanging out in New Zealand for a bit.

                      Elijah Wood not aging is creepy. I really like that after LOTR, he seemed to take on a lot of shady roles. He's really creepy in Sin City.

                    • pennylane27 says:

                      MAN, his character in Sin City is one of the most disturbing in that film, and there are A LOT of them!

                      We should write our 'reunion' script and send it to Jackson, I wouldn't mind a trip to New Zealand myself. 😉

                    • Openattheclose says:

                      I have a feeling our "reunion" would end up having very little to do with the actual plot of The Hobbit and just end up having all of our favorite characters hanging out with each other. Not that there's anything wrong with that!

                    • pennylane27 says:

                      Peter Jackson: 'Ok, so let me get this straight. You want me to bring everyone back for a pointless get together? What about The Hobbit?'

                      Us: 'Oh, nevermind that, we're telling you, this is what the people want!'

                      Peter Jackson: 'Someone please get these wackos out of here.'

                      Us: *being dragged out by security* 'Please, we have really good ideas!'

                    • Openattheclose says:

                      Haha.

                      "Please Mr. Jackson, the people need to see Legolas again! They need to see his sexy… I mean his wonderful archery abilities. YOU CAN'T DO THIS TO US— I mean TO THE PEOPLE."

                    • pennylane27 says:

                      hahaha we're the worst nerdy fans ever. No wait, the best.

                    • Openattheclose says:

                      Definitely the best.

  27. roxywilde says:

    I really, really loved how Collins let Katniss get injured. Seriously injured, especially considering that much of her strategy depends on climbing trees. There were moments in the capital where Katniss seemed infallible, and that usually drives me crazy. The main character does not have to be the best ever at everything! So I'm glad Katniss has been weakened, and now must work through it and use her remaining strengths as best she can. That, to me, makes her strong.

    Also: I guess the Gamemakers appreciate violent irony. So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something.

    Mark, you crack me up.

    As for this line: …Glimmer I hear someone call her—ugh, the names the people in District 1 give their children are so ridiculous…I see where you're coming from about it being oddly conversational, and thus a rather awkward shift in tone, but I appreciated it. I like the self-referential nature of it, and I have to say that my first reaction to Katniss' name was that it was pretty ridiculous. I'm a character-name snob, I guess.

    One more thing I love: Katniss' preternatural grasp on how to work the audience. It goes back to her survival instincts–if she's going to survive this, she knows she has to ham it up a bit. The fact that she recognizes it reiterates that survival in this world goes beyond hunting and foraging. You have to survive the celebrity, as well.

    More reviews please now, k thanx.

    • Karen says:

      he fact that she recognizes it reiterates that survival in this world goes beyond hunting and foraging. You have to survive the celebrity, as well.
      Also Katniss's self awareness of her behavior and the cameras gives the readers a reminder that these horrific events are just taking place on their own, they're happening for the express purpose of the entertainment of others. (And also maybe that we as the reader/audience are being entertained by it as well.)

    • ldwy says:

      Just, bravo on a beautifully thought out and written comment.

      • roxywilde says:

        Aw, thanks! That's the beauty of a good book: it elicits deep thought and analysis, which is always a welcomed activity to me 🙂

  28. Shanella says:

    "I’ve been pretty hard on Collins so far, but I have to give her an astral plane high five. This is a huge moment in this book because even though Katniss is obviously going to make it out alive, Collins has made us realize that she can still experience so much loss aside from her life."

    I felt the same way about this chapter (actually all the chapters since the start of the games). I know that the games itself means that people are going to die, so I was somewhat prepared for that, however, when Katniss started getting seriously hurt and close to death many times, I realised how serious Collins was. I mean, I KNEW Katniss had to survive, I just knew it, but there was still a small part of me that wondered, "what if Collins kills her off and has the rest of the story told from another person's POV????"

    Those small seeds of doubt kept me on the edge of my seat and up all night finishing this book.

  29. dakjak says:

    DO YOU KNOW WHAT WOULD MAKE EVERYONES LIVES EASIER??? IF THEY JUST HAD FREAKING DANGER ZONES.

    All i can think of when I see fire is
    <img src="http://i758.photobucket.com/albums/xx228/padfoot007_2010/GIF%20PARTY/tumblr_lc9b50yxFu1qzdugno1_500.gif&quot; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

    Oh, and I came to a sudden realization about this book, and why I don't think it's terribly great or whatever: these kids aren't very innocent. It would be one thing if this was the modern world and this was happening to regular school children, aka Battle Royale, but these kids aren't really like that. they've had training in survival. even Rue has skills that can be used (since she's stayed alive for this long). None of these kids have that endearing quality of innocents and wanting the games to stop. They don't seem to question the system, or why others are fighting. the other tributes are very one dimensional in this aspect. In Battle Royale, the reader understood the reasons why people were killing, because we got inside their heads. I don't feel anything for anyone in this book, except maybe Cinna. anyhoo, my two cents.

    THIS IS WHAT A 3-D CHARACTER LOOKS LIKE COLLINS
    <img src="http://i758.photobucket.com/albums/xx228/padfoot007_2010/GIF%20PARTY/tumblr_lc9d7v2l3j1qzdugno1_500.gif&quot; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

  30. dakjak says:

    DO YOU KNOW WHAT WOULD MAKE EVERYONES LIVES EASIER??? IF THEY JUST HAD FREAKING DANGER ZONES.

    All i can think of when I see fire is
    <img src="http://i758.photobucket.com/albums/xx228/padfoot007_2010/GIF%20PARTY/tumblr_lc9b50yxFu1qzdugno1_500.gif&quot; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

    Oh, and I came to a sudden realization about this book, and why I don't think it's terribly great or whatever: these kids aren't very innocent. It would be one thing if this was the modern world and this was happening to regular school children, aka Battle Royale, but these kids aren't really like that. they've had training in survival. even Rue has skills that can be used (since she's stayed alive for this long). None of these kids have that endearing quality of innocents and wanting the games to stop. They don't seem to question the system, or why others are fighting. the other tributes are very one dimensional in this aspect. In Battle Royale, the reader understood the reasons why people were killing, because we got inside their heads. I don't feel anything for anyone in this book, except maybe Cinna. anyhoo, my two cents.

    THIS IS WHAT A 3-D CHARACTER LOOKS LIKE COLLINS
    <img src="http://i758.photobucket.com/albums/xx228/padfoot007_2010/GIF%20PARTY/tumblr_lc9d7v2l3j1qzdugno1_500.gif&quot; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

    • corporatecake says:

      How much can these kids really question the system, though? They're tributes in the Games, and the closest you can really do to rebel against the system is like Peeta said, die as yourself. Any railing against this horrible system will result in being killed. Even if you went into the Games and were determined to evade the other tributes so that you wouldn't have to get involved in the killing, the Gamemakers will send something like the lovely wall of fire to either drive you towards the other tributes, or just kill you.

      I understand where you're coming from, but what are these kids' options? We don't get the other tributes' perspective because we're in Katniss's head. For all you know, some of them agree with Katniss (they probably do), they think that the Games are disgusting and wrong, but your instinct for survival is going to trump that. I mean, of course these kids aren't innocent. They've grown up watching the Hunger Games. Which is part of what makes it so much worse.

  31. Karen says:

    I guess the Gamemakers appreciate violent irony. So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something.
    I cannot stop laughing at this. But SERIOUSLY, RIGHT?

    Also, I love that scene where Katniss tricks one of the tributes into following her up the tree. ILU, Katniss, using your head and your tree climbing skills like that. 😀

    YOU HAVE TO STOP ENDING CHAPTERS LIKE THIS. Jesus god in heaven, I don’t want to stop now. DAMN IT.
    LOL Collins is so mean. The only solution is TWO REVIEWS TODAY. 😀

    I wish had more ~deep thoughts~ about this chapter, but mostly I'm just like "OMG. KEEP READING!". Collins's writing style really does tend to sweep me along with Katniss. I just want to keep going and know what happens next because as a reader I feel present in the narrative.

  32. pennylane27 says:

    The girl with the arrows, Glimmer I hear someone call her—ugh, the names the people in District 1 give their children are so ridiculous—anyway Glimmer scales the tree until the branches begin to crack under her feet and then has the good sense to stop.

    I think it's the 'anyway' that makes it conversational, and it totally caught my eye too, because nothing like that had appeared before. In fact, as I was rereading this chapter today in preparation for you review, I wondered if you would mention this. 😉

    The part when she got burned filled my with desperation, I hate burns, they scare me more than cuts or bleeding. I have only sustained light burns in the kitchen or with the hair straightener, but man they hurt

    • andreah1234 says:

      Yeah burning usually hurts more that any other thing because the pain actually sticks with you for a really long time, and if you don't take the right care with it it can lead to many other even worse and more painful things, so yeah burns suck. The simple fact that Katniss had the sense and the strength to climb that tree with such a great pain made me take her a lot more serious as a character, because to be honest I completely hate characters that refuse to fight for themself and to be strong on their own, which is the reason I love all the females in Harry Potter and totally hate Bella (not that i need a reason to hate Bella more that she is just really annoying) and really made me like Katniss.

  33. Marie_Goos says:

    "So they're like the very worst hipsters of all time" LOL Now I'm imagining the Gamemakers all in plaid shirts, skinny jeans, and aviator sunglasses (maybe with a jaunty neon trucker's hat if they're feeling really perky). Maybe there's a neighborhood called Williamsburg in the Capitol where they all live in loft apartments, and as we speak they're taking pictures of the games with their digital SLRs and posting them on flickr. :B

    Also, since people liked my last drawing, here's a whole (half-assed) comic to encapsulate chapter 13:

    <img src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v614/mariegoos/katniss02s.jpg&quot; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

    I promise I'll stop with the brown pee jokes now.

  34. jgrec87 says:

    "Ok, so the first thing I thought of when I read this was that horrible moment in Deathly Hallows when Harry realizes his wand is broken. It’s senseless and it brings with it a pervading hopelessness."

    THIS. When Harry breaks his wand it's like, ARE YOU KIDDING ME WHAT ELSE COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG?? Which is exactly how you feel in this moment.

    Keep reading Mark!!!!!

  35. Steeple says:

    I've had second-degree burns before (that is, blisters, like what Katniss has), but since I have low pain tolerance, they always send me crying to the faucet. After a minute or thereabouts, it just stings like a fucking jerkface for a long time. >=(

    Basically, I empathize especially with Katniss here.

    • ldwy says:

      Yeah, I hate burns. I'm a real baby about them. I've had several burns in the kitchen because I'm a clutz like that, but I've actually had sunburns so bad they blistered and were gross and I couldn't sleep because laying down on the sheets hurt so much. Because I'm a super pink person (pale, but in that pink kind of ruddy Irish way, haha), I burn really easily, but I remember that particular one. So awful.

      So yeah, basically Katniss must have it much worse, having to climb trees and shit, and I empathize with her too.

  36. rainbowsinside says:

    Yeah I've noticed that about Collins' writing too. In the middle of her narration, suddenly the tone gets super conversational. She does that a couple other times later on. No matter how much I've come to enjoy her story, I don't think I will ever be able to not hate all those really awkward sentences she throws in here and there. Siriusly, there are some that no matter how many times I read it, I still have no idea what she was trying to say. Ugh.

  37. Lan says:

    i'm almost sure of it, but i think Glimmer & Cato are in the same district.. just so you know!

  38. EmilyAnne90 says:

    It's getting instense, love it!

    I wish I had more fanart to post that wasn't spoilery, but oh well. Here are a couple.

    Fireballs By: RohanElf

    <img src="http://fc07.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2009/342/0/b/Fireballs_by_RohanElf.jpg"&gt;

    Katniss Headshot By: Ratgirlstudios

    <img src="http://fc06.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2010/189/5/0/Katniss_Headshot_by_Ratgirlstudios.jpg"&gt;

  39. hungriestgame says:

    "until know" is how we say it in awesome people land.

  40. City Of Doors says:

    Oh man, I'm so glad that I waited until today to read this chapter or I would have been freaking out all day at work. So tomorrow I'm going to be spending the day out work freaking out about the end of the next chapter D:

  41. Garth says:

    Peeta isn't evil… well fuck!

    Also, Collins, slow down! Would it kill you to have some introspection or something. The more I read the less this seems like Battle Royale and The Long Walk, and more like the Running Man; ignore the physiological implications of what is going on and just focus on the rip roaring, edge of your seat action. It's fun, but not terribly fulfilling.

  42. MadarFoxfire says:

    What on earth could Collins do now? I mean, short of the remaining Tributes killing each other or dying in the wild, how on earth is she going to carry this narrative any further?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

  43. gredandforge says:

    I think I'm just being greedy but wouldn't it be awesome if, one day when it turns out you have lots of time, you did 2 reviews in a day?! One for Harry Potter and one for Hunger Games? 😀

  44. Mauve_Avenger says:

    I noticed that you didn't include Peeta's only dialogue in this chapter review:

    "The Careers regroup on the ground and I can hear them growling conspiratorially among themselves, furious I have made them look foolish. But twilight has arrived and their window of attack on me is closing. Finally, I hear Peeta say harshly, 'Oh, let her stay up there. It's not like she's going anywhere. We'll deal with her in the morning.'"

    So his voice is harsh either because he's talking about killing Katniss or because he's telling off the other tributes, and he's telling them to wait either because it'll be easier to kill her in the morning (more rest, better vision) or because he's trying to stall them (and possibly saw what Rue apparently did?). More "is he or isn't he?" fun.

  45. Kripa says:

    So did anyone else notice that Cato is the name of an evil tribute? And is anyone else aware of the Cato Institute? Coincidence? I THINK NOT.

  46. Aimee says:

    OMG RUE! Yayy now we're getting to the good stuff.

  47. jennreyn says:

    Um hold up. I haven't read these books so someone explain to me.

    The tributes can't climb the tree, I get that (FOR WHATEVER REASON because why could Katniss? Because they're all careers and well-fed therefore heavier?), but Glimmer has arrows? SO WHY DOES SHE NOT JUST TRY TO SHOOT KATNISS? Or does she not have a bow? Still they could throw shit at Katniss and try to make her fall out of the tree. I call bullshit on this.

    • corporatecake says:

      Mark didn't include these quotes, but Katniss can climb trees where the Careers can't because she's lighter and, more importantly, she has more practice. She knows where to put her hands and feet, where the Careers don't.

      Glimmer has a bow and arrows, and she does try to shoot Katniss with them, but she misses (Katniss calls her incompetent), and she probably doesn't want to risk losing more arrows. Think about it, there's a finite number of arrows in the arena. If you lose or break a couple fruitlessly trying to shoot Katniss, that's bad. By this point, Katniss is high enough up in the tree that throwing shit at her, as you say, wouldn't do much good. Peeta tells them to leave her up there, which makes sense. Katniss can't stay up there forever. She'll run out of food and water. She'll eventually come down and the Careers will be waiting. Seems like a lot better idea than wasting ammunition or keep trying to climb the tree.

  48. Anon says:

    I agree, Collins got a good writing style for action. Short, choppy, not bogged down in unneeded details. Nothing I hate more than an action scene weighted down with purple prose. Also (fisheries and wildlife major mode on) I appeciate how Collins ok the time to learn basic survival skills for Katniss.

    Also, I have a confesson, I totally finished the book last Sunday. Sorry Mark.

  49. HLR II says:

    Oh, how I miss Arrested Development, and Oh, how appropriate that comment was 🙂

  50. Kelly L says:

    Without bothering to read other comments to see if anyone else said it first, but it was a different pond. She had originally considered circling around the fire to head back to the original one but it was impossible for her to do so. I think she just kind of landed near a new one when the fire stopped pushing her forward.

  51. stellaaaaakris says:

    Hey, Mark, meet Shit. It's real.

    Ever since I caught up with you towards the end of GoF, I haven't missed any of your reviews. But I had to leave yesterday and didn't have my laptop so I couldn't read what you had to say for Chapter 12 or this one until just now. It was HORRIBLE.

    My favorite part of your review was the Gamemakers=hipsters. Must be in the Top 10 Mark lines EVER.

    You know what makes me sad? I'm pretty sure, based on my name, I'd live in District 1. I have a pretty ridiculous name. Not anything as bad as Sparkle or Rainbow Brite, but quite ridiculous.

    The boy from District 10 is still alive. I am impressed. He was crippled before the Games, right?

    I hate when authors plan how many chapters they want their books to have and then break up the plot based on that. I get the feeling that's what Collins did. It makes for some really short chapters and incredibly abrupt stops. It also makes people like Mark, who are crazy enough and have adequate willpower, who decide to read one chapter at a time, suffer. HG is a story best read in one (or maybe even a few more) sitting(s). While I know Mark isn't actually only on Chapter 14, he still stops and writes a review. It breaks the flow. The same with HP, but at least there each chapter was it's own little story almost. Something significant almost always happened. HG isn't quite the same. Hmmm…I just rambled off whatever my original point was. I'm not really sure what it was though. I think something along the lines of, "WTF is going on?! How are you able to put this book down?" Maybe.

    • Karen says:

      I hate when authors plan how many chapters they want their books to have and then break up the plot based on that. I get the feeling that's what Collins did. It makes for some really short chapters and incredibly abrupt stops.

      I actually think that the chapter breaks really show her background in TV writing. To me it seems like she wrote out one big plot and then put the chapter breaks based on where the cliffhangers were. But yeah, I agree that this is a book best read in a couple of sittings. Each chapter is not a self contained story, but rather a small piece of a bigger plot.

      • stellaaaaakris says:

        Oh, I didn't know she wrote stuff for TV. Do you know anything specific she did? With that information, then I'd say you're completely right. It does feel like I'm reading a synopsis of an episode of some show. It's really interesting how a person's experience so directly influences their style or story. JKR's mother's death is all over HP, and I'd say HG does have a bit of a LOST feel to it. I remember that first season, every episode I watched I felt like I was experiencing a 41 minute panic attack. HG has a similar effect on me.

        • I think she did Hey, Arnold or something. Some of the classic Nickelodeon stuff.

          • Mauve_Avenger says:

            I just checked. As far as I can tell, she's not credited as a writer for Hey Arnold, but her biographical information says she worked on Clarissa Explains It All and the Mystery Files of Shelby Woo.

        • ReptarLives says:

          She also wrote CLIFFORD PUPPY DAYS! We all know our kids shows were secretly odd, but seriously?
          FROM CLIFFORD TO THIS?!

    • Mauve_Avenger says:

      The District 10 boy has a crippled foot, but I don't think it's been described how serious the impediment is.

      I'm one of the ones who's reading this one chapter at a time, and there's mainly one thing keeping me from reading ahead: I don't have a hard copy of the book, so I'm reading this on my computer, which both shortens my attention span (hello, YouTube and e-mail) and makes reading for long periods of time uncomfortable.

      And while I really dislike the way cliffhangers are overused in this book, a few people mentioned in earlier comments that Suzanne Collins is a TV screenwriter, which really helps explain that and some of the other problems I have with her writing. So now, I'm basically thinking of each chapter as an episode of a TV show (which makes more sense to me than making it into a movie, actually) where you want to savor the drama and the lead-up to the next episode while you theorize about where the show is actually going to go.

      • stellaaaaakris says:

        I guess I took "crippled foot" to be almost a Tiny Tim kind of situation. I make problems worse in my head in real life, why should it be any different in fiction?

        And your method is quite strategic. I can't lose myself as much when I'm reading things online versus in a book. I watch TV shows mostly on my computer and I'm constantly pausing them if I hear an alert or someone starts chatting with me.

        Jeez, I hadn't really realized how many cliffhangers there are until I'm rereading one chapter at a time. But I just flipped back through the book and there are very few chapters so far that don't end with some kind of cliffhanger. I didn't know about SC's TV background, but now that I do it makes a lot of sense. It actually feels a lot like Gossip Girl to me, with a Survivor vibe. I'm not sure why. Maybe I'm focusing more on the possible romantic plot line because I still love Peeta and the idea of 24 teenagers battling each other to the death freaks me out.

        The end of Chapter 9, where Peeta confesses his love, that'd be the end of November sweeps. Ooh, if I had to wait 2 months to find out what happens next, I'd go insane. Even waiting that one day for Mark to go on to the next chapter had me stressed.

      • pennylane27 says:

        Huh, I read the whole three books on my 11.6 inches laptop – in two days. I really got used to it, given that is the only way I get to read some books and also I HAVE NO SELF-CONTROL. How do you do it?

        • Mauve_Avenger says:

          I'm guessing a part of the problem is that I don't have a proper computer desk to use at the moment, so it's really uncomfortable. I'm also pretty sensitive to bright lights, so even with the screen dimmed I'm still susceptible to computer eye strain or whatever it's called.

          Mainly, though, I think it's just that the writing style keeps me from getting immersed. I'm very detail-oriented, which is largely why I liked but ultimately had some problems with the Harry Potter books.

          So when I read something sparsely written, my mind automatically goes to fill in the details and work out the logistics. And when it's too sparsely written, that becomes too difficult, the story itself becomes much less important to me, and I'm mostly reading to fill in those information gaps, sort of like doing a research project.

  52. karadudz says:

    I remember this chapter!!! IT WAS THE SCARIEST!
    It's the one that reminds us that the arena is not a natural field, it's a man made construction of hell.
    And when the fireballs started aiming at her and the wall of fire and the suffocating from the smoke….. OMGOSH I FELT HER PAIN…. Well not really, it was just really UNBEARABLE TO READ. And the burns! Hell, the burns! It was just really traumatizing reading this chapter.

    Katniss is so vulnerable with her physical pain but she still finds her way up a tree and taunts on the other tributes. OH and jokes about the "weather" in the arena. It's awesome. SHE'S definitely A BAMF in this chapter.

    But I still don't like her character

  53. Tabbyclaw says:

    She says 'Cato,' and all I can think about is Inspector Clouseau's sidekick from the Pink Panther movies.

  54. corporatecake says:

    Having had second and third degree burns before, one thing that actually disappointed me about this chapter was how the burns were described. A second degree burn? That's fucking agony. I know that I wasn't being pursued by balls of fire when I got my second degree burn, but it was way smaller than Katniss's and I could not move for about ten minutes as my brain tried to cope with the pain.

    • simply_shipping says:

      Well, adrenaline can do some pretty amazing things, and if I remember correctly, once Katniss found the new pond, she didn't move like at all until the Careers found her.

  55. celestineangel1 says:

    I love the content of this sentence because that name is ridiculous, but did the diction of this piece seems strange to anyone else? It’s far more conversational than anything else we’d seen up to this point.

    Especially considering she's supposed to be telling this as it happens. It's just weird to think that supposedly Katniss is narrating as it happens and… well… I mean, for the action sequences, yes, it's awesomesauce, but it still makes moments like these awkward.

    OMGs FIRE.

  56. sageofmudora says:

    Yay! I got here early enough to comment!

    This book is crazy, Collins has definitely delivered on the violence promised by the premise. I too like the realism. I also loved the "girl on fire" irony. That sounds exactly like the kind of twisted image the Capitol would get off on.

    I wonder if we ever get to learn what sort of traps the other tributes face. I'm sure some of then have faced terrible things as well.

  57. embers says:

    Just want to say that reading your review is almost as enjoyable as reading the story for the first time was…!

  58. phoebe says:

    I wish i could just like this post.

  59. Leesh says:

    BREAK THIS ONE CHAPTER AT A TIME VOW AND PLEASE DEAR GOD KEEP REVIEWING.
    -has already read the trilogy-

    But I do very much enjoy reading. SO YES, I agree with everyone else.

  60. Cara says:

    I admire your willpower SO much. How can you stand it???? With both HP and THG I basically sat down with each new book and didn't move again until I was done. And I think the chart of deaths (which sounds like a really epic title but really it's just a superb method of organization) is a really good idea, cuz when I was reading the books I kept getting confused about who was dead and who was left.

  61. ldwy says:

    I'm late coming to this one, and I gotta run, but I loved this chapter because it freaked me out!!! And Katniss is totally badass in a believable way.

  62. Penquin47 says:

    The Career alliance is bugging me. There's the same number in the alliance as there are to hunt down at this point. Unlike Survivor or Big Brother, there aren't competing alliances where you have to be the bigger pack, and there aren't swing votes to worry about. How is it advantageous to maintain this big of an alliance at this point? Pick off all the others and then free-for-all?

    Speculation: Katniss is getting her sponsor benefit here. A bow would be nice since she has an arrow. What kind of medicines would be available, or that the producers would allow, would be interesting to know. Even just some painkillers would make a huge difference, though, because I'm thinking Katniss is probably smart enough to use them wisely. Sending food and water would let her stay in the tree. This can't be yet another trap already, can it?

    BTW, Mark, you aren't the clumsiest kitchen person. As I type I have four cuts on my left hand from four separate knife accidents in the kitchen. At *least* two burns. I am a giant wimp about burn pain, and my leg tried to curl up and whimper when I read the description of Katniss's burn.

    • Penquin47 says:

      I had to try like 10 times to post that because of length limit, so if it doesn't make sense, it's because I kept trying to shorten it!

    • Garth says:

      The Career Alliance: Same here.

      I'm also not sure why the Gamemakers would allow it to happen year in, year out. From a viewers perspective wouldn't watching the career pack hunt down, kill the other contestant's and then fight amongst themselves get a bit stale after the umpteenth time.

    • corporatecake says:

      Katniss does mention that the Career alliance tends to pick off the others and then, like you said, turn into a free for all, when the tension starts getting to everyone and then they just start trying to kill each other. The Career alliance, to me, always seemed like a case of "keep your friends close, but your enemies closer." The Careers are the strongest and the best trained, and with the exception of Katniss with her 11, seem to regard the other tributes as simple cannon fodder. So the alliance helps them hunt down the "weaker" tributes from the other Districts, and allows them all to keep an eye on one another. That's what I thought, at least.

  63. lossthief says:

    p.170: Now I've got "I Ran" by Flock of Seagulls stuck in my head. Grrrrr.
    p.171: "This is one thing the games must not do." That is just such an awkward way to phrase that.
    p.172: Fireball? ZOMG are they fighting dragons?
    p.173: This would make a sweet video game level.
    p.174: Now do you understand how terrible that slogan is? I tried to warn you, but you just had to keep repeating it.
    p.176: informative!FLASHBACK TIME
    p.177: As somebody who's had a sever burn, I have only one thing to say to this: OUCH. OUCH. OUCH. OUCH. OUCH!
    p.178: Kat needs to her sponsors for some coffee. Or some Four Loco for a really good time. Yes, I'm assuming they still have that drink after the apocalypse.
    p.179: I'm reminded of raccoon hunts.
    p.180: A sword? While climbing a tree? Have fun turning yourself into shiskabob, dumbass.
    p.180: Oh my gods, I just realized that Kat climbs trees just like Edward Cullen. Does this mean Peeta is Bella? And that Katniss will carry him on her back while swinging through the trees?"
    p.180: "…The names the people of District 1 give their children are so ridiculous." Hey Kat, stop stealing my comments!
    p.180: 80 feet? How tall is this fucking tree?
    p.181: *Puts on best Tommy Wiseau impression* Oh Hai, Rue.
    Overall, this was a pretty good chapter, I liked seeing Katniss be more of a snarker, and I think what Mark said about her finding her humor in all this might actually come to fruition. I felt the cliff hanger at the end was just sort of "meh" but I really loved the visual of Kat running through the burning forest while rocket propelled flaming apples shot at her. This makes me want to go see the movie more.
    Grade: "B+"

  64. bibliotrek says:

    So, Cato: possibly a connection with Cato the Elder, of "Carthago delenda est" fame? Cato is a typically Roman Capitol name. TO STRETCH THIS REALLY FAR, could there potentially be a parallel between Carthage and District 13, since District 13 was the place that the Capitol thought had to be destroyed?

    I mean, I don't really know what the point of a Carthage/District 13 parallel would be. Any classicists out there who might be able to shed some (non-spoilery) light?

    • pennylane27 says:

      I don't know about the Carthage/District 13 parallel (I'm no erudite or anything), but it does sound interesting. I never made the connection between the names, probably because Cato in Spanish is Catón and I only learned about him after reading references in Astèrix.

  65. vaporeon13204 says:

    Such cruel cliffhangers. XD; I'm excited to find out what happens next though. :3 (And I look forward to reading the book myself when I return to the US.)

  66. Telling Mark it gets more real isn't a spoiler. The entire slogan of his blogs is YOU ARE NOT PREPARED.

  67. barnswallowkate says:

    I see your "BIGGEST KLUTZ IN THE KITCHEN EVER" and raise you: I got second degree burns (blisters and all) along the sides of both hands from getting stuck to the inside of a freezer. Yes, I got burned by cold. I've also set at least two meals on fire (ok, one was only smoldering, but still…).

    Back to the book: I finished all three books in about 36 hours after your first review. I think re-reading them via your reviews is bad for my health. I'm getting so nervous all over again!

  68. malarkiness says:

    "I guess the Gamemakers appreciate violent irony. So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something."

    Oh my God, Mark. xD

    The cliffhanger at the end of this chapter was the first one to legitimately piss me off, not gonna lie.

  69. marylacey says:

    The cliffhangers are just too much. It feels like there should be a thunderclap after the last lines. It's insane.

    This books needs to be made into a movie like, pronto. I would probably be having insane panic attacks in the theatre that are about 100000000x worse than I did while reading the books. \

    Oh, and Mark, I think you should review about 5 chapters a day. That completely solves the problem. You can just keep on reading … 😀

  70. rowanlee says:

    Oh, Glimmer is a ridiculous name, Katniss? And what about Peeta?

    BUT JESUS. That description of the burn… ow ow ow. Collins's writing is getting more impressive by the chapter. And " So they’re like the very worst hipsters of all time or something." just about killed me.

  71. Cally_Black says:

    Katniss vs. Fire balls by viria13:

    <img src=http://viria13.deviantart.com/gallery/25232161#/d2q61h6>

  72. Cally_Black says:

    Sorry, that last one didn't work, let me try again:
    Katniss vs. Fire balls by viria13:

    <img src=http://fc07.deviantart.net/fs71/f/2010/142/2/5/Katniss_vs_Fire_balls_by_viria13.jpg>

  73. cassanova says:

    I absolutely love your reactions to everything you read in this book.

  74. Stephalopolis says:

    I think this is why I like these books so much- I love that people can, and do, get hurt. There's no magical "oh hey, I managed to run away from the fire and didn't get hurt and still have all my belongings." Collins is willing to cause pain. Katniss got burned, her nice heat reflecting jacket got burned. Sure, she managed to survive, but so far, in the 3 (?) days Katniss has been in the games, she's been almost stabbed in the head with a flying knife, suffered massive dehydration, ran from a wall of fire, burned half her jacket, got shot with a fireball resulting in multiple burn injuries, and is now surrounded by other tributes aiming to kill her. It actually makes me believe that Collins might actually kill Katniss off. At this rate, I think Collins would be willing to do it.I do like that Katniss is playing the crowd back at home. Not everyone can be the "rebel against the Capitol" type. As readers, we'd like her to, but we're projecting our own wants onto Katniss. She doesn't care what we want, she just wants to survive and make it back home to District 12.

  75. Revolution64 says:

    I would laugh so damn hard if Rue was pointing at some sort of insect or something.

    • FlameRaven says:

      It would depend on the type of insect, wouldn't it. A spider or centipede would be creepy. A butterfly would be less so. Although honestly, I would not put it past the Capitol to come up with crazy death butterflies or some other insanity.

      (I know the answer, of course, but I'll just let you speculate until Mark gets the review up. ;P)

  76. takashid says:

    hey fans, tell me, are the last two books worth reading? i only read the first one, and the ending of the first one kind of turned me off the rest because

    SPOILER DON"T LOOK MARK OR ANYONE WHO HAS NOT READ!!!!!

    The romance seemed to be the only plot point left, and i feared it was going to turn into some kind of love triangle series Ala twilight.

    END OF SPOILERS

    so yeah, never read the last two. tell me hunger game fans is it worth it? is there more then what my SPOILER asked?

    • Treesa says:

      there's a love triangle angle in the rest of the books, but NO it is not the only plot point left. there is so much more to the books than that. katniss will go through a lot, will have so much to think and worry about, and yes love will be part of it, but her world does not revolve around it. unlike some other female character who seems to think life has no meaning unless her boyfriend is around. *rolls eyes*

    • LOTRjunkie says:

      Don't worry, major plot occurs! So much more has been going on in Panem than we ever realised and there is a super plot twist in Catching Fire. So, yeah, the other two books are definitely worth reading.

    • Karen says:

      No, there is a BUNCH of other plot. And if you ask me, there isn't much of a love triangle. It's pretty obvious where Katniss's heart lies from about halfway through Catching Fire, if you ask me. It's really more of a love story with obstacles, one of which happens to be another person. The last two books are really great just to see how Katniss grows and changes.

    • takashid says:

      Thanks everyone! guess ill take a look at the other books, just wanted to be sure they were more then romance and angst.

  77. gunslingerpadme says:

    I thought the fire was an interesting trap by the Gamemakers. Since the opening games, Katniss has been "The girl who was on fire", and now you have GIANT WALLS OF FLAME going after her. And then there's Rue. I was happy to see that we get to see her again, and I reason that she has some sort of importance because she is one of the Tributes that Collins has given a name to.

    And slightly off topic, I looked at the back of my copy of the book, and where they have comments from reviewers, there is one from Stephen King, which makes sense, and then there is one from Stephanie Meyer. WTF? In so few words, King's comment relates to the storyline, while Meyer comes off as a… well…. horrible. Why on earth put her next to STEPHEN KING?

    • Openattheclose says:

      I think her little blurb compared to King's is hilarious, and I am glad they put them with each other to make her look as ridiculous as she is.

      • liliaeth says:

        What did she say?

        • pennylane27 says:

          "I was so obsessed with this book I had to take it with me out to dinner and hide it under the edge of the table so I wouldn't have to stop reading. The story kept me up for several nights in a row, because even after I was finished, I just lay in bed wide awake thinking about it.I've been recommending it to total strangers in Target. And now to everyone who reads my website. The Hunger Games is amazing."
          –Stephenie Meyer.

          COMPARE

          "[The Hunger Games] is a violent, jarring, speed-rap of a novel that generates nearly constant suspense…I couldn't stop reading."
          –Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly Review
          (And that's the short review, the long one is amazing but SPOILER)

          SO YEAH.

      • pennylane27 says:

        Is that the almighty BAMF Neville Longbottom being all BAMF in Deathly Hallows in your picture? You should get like a thousand points just for that 🙂

        • Openattheclose says:

          It sure is. He had the most BAMF use of his very little screen-time in DH amiright?

          • pennylane27 says:

            Totally. One scene and he had me squealing 'NEVILLE I LOVE YOU FOREVER'. I can't wait to see what he can do with more screen-time!

  78. Ana says:

    I thought the same with you when I read this,

    "ugh, the names the people in District 1 give their children are so ridiculous"

    It seems… out of place, her life is threatened and she think how ridiculous is her name?

Comments are closed.