Catching Fire and Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
As you might recall, I took The Hunger Games (book 1 of the series) with me to Yosemite and I really liked it. E and I both did. I'm thinking Addie is not quite old enough for it yet but she will be soon; I was happy to find another good series of kids' books.
Immediately after finishing THG I dove into Catching Fire. It was entertaining, but it felt like a transition to something larger. I was cool to hang in there and see where it was going. Unfortunately, I wasn't really that pleased with the final book.
Let me shorthand my review of the series for ya:
Book I was good, Book II felt like it was building to something exciting, and then Book III was kind of a letdown.
No, I didn't put on makeup or brush my hair before I took those pics. Suck it, haters.
Catching Fire was a continuation of many of the themes that the first book set up. Where the first book was more of a hunter/hunted situation, the second book was a survival-of-the-group/riddle thing. Cool. I felt like it was a slightly different take on the same thing and though I didn't love it as much as the first one, it was enjoyable and I was still hooked.
Mockingjay had the potential to be really great, but a lot of it was slow and then the end just didn't pan out. It's not that I mind what happened so much, but I felt like it should have ended with a much bigger showdown between good and evil. That's about all I can say without spoiling things for everyone.
I still highly recommend the first book and I genuinely liked the second. The thing is, you're going to read the first one and want to keep reading the rest. I did. I just would have liked for the series to finish on a stronger note.
My recommendation: You're going to read these two anyway if you read the first book. So go ahead, but don't blame me when you finish the last one and it's kind of meh.