Book Review: The Girl Who Was on Fire - Movie Edition
Publication Date: December 11, 2011
by R.J. Carter
Published: March 21, 2012
Just in time for the release of "The Hunger Games" in theaters comes this Benbella reissue of thought-provoking essays based on the concepts and issues resulting from Suzanne Collins' wildly popular young adult series. The-Trades has reviewed the initial release of The Girl Who Was On Fire, but this updated version includes three more essays which make some pretty intriguing -- and bold -- cases making it worth your while to upgrade.
First among the new entries is Diana Peterfreund, whose essay "Hunger Game Theory" makes a very scientific study of the paradigm of a survival game. Starting with philosophical constructs like the classic "Prisoner's Dilemma," Peterfreund delivers a wholly engrossing and thought-provoking take on the best way to play the game -- and how Katniss Everdeen turned the game against itself through outside-the-box thinking and turning the Gamesmakers' rules on themselves.
"Did the Third Book Suck?" is a daring entry from Brent Hartinger. While I've expressed my own disappointment with the way Mockingjay stacked up against The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, Hartinger goes a step further, expressing in great detail why the third book "sucked" -- and then doing a literary 180 with an expression of why the book didn't suck at all. Way to cover all your bases, Mr. Hartinger.
Jackson Pearce gets right to the heart of who the most important person in the series, focusing on one corner of the love triangle with "Gale: Knight, Cowboy, Badass." Looking back at the various historical roles of knights, cowboys, and, yes, badasses, Pearce makes a case for Gale being pivotal to the series, rather than the ancillary also-ran rival for Katniss affections. Team Peeta will disagree, but Team Gale will have something to rally around.
The Girl Who Was on Fire may be a bit more pedantic than the casual adventure reader may care for. But for literature classes and book club discussions, it's an invaluable resource for livening up book talks by injecting unique perspectives and takeaways.