30 May 2010

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher

Incarceron is a prison unlike any other: Its inmates live not only in cells, but also in metal forests, dilapidated cities, and unbounded wilderness. The prison has been sealed for centuries, and only one man, legend says, has ever escaped.

Finn, a seventeen-year-old prisoner, can't remember his childhood and believes he came from Outside Incarceron. He's going to escape, even though most inmates don't believe that Outside even exists. And then Finn finds a crystal key and through it, a girl named Claudia.

Claudia claims to live Outside--her father is the Warden of Incarceron and she's doomed to an arranged marriage. If she helps Finn escape, she will need his help in return.

But they don't realize that there is more to Incarceron than meets the eye. Escape will take their greatest courage and cost far more than they know.

Because Incarceron is alive.
Though said to be confusing at first, Incarceron is a thrilling ride.  I was pleasantly surprised and impressed at the full, natural detail.  As I was reading, I kept thinking how much thought Catherine Fisher must have put into this.  Surely she had notebooks full of all the notes required to create such a realistic world?

Catherine Fisher drew me into these character's lives with stunning ease.  Claudia is stubborn and daring.  She's not about to follow the rules just because she's told to.  Seeing her struggle to piece together the clues was fascinating.  Finn, too, was intriguing with his dark, mysterious past and his underlying tie to the machine keeping him prisoner.

Similar in context to City of Ember, Incarceron has many twists and turns.  When I finished, I couldn't help but feel exhilarated and almost overwhelmed by how the story had turned out.  The mystery to Incarceron made me practically giddy.  How can someone craft such an elegant, yet twisted storyline?

I recommended this book to two of my friends.  One said that it was confusing and it is perhaps a bit, in the beginning.  But you have to keep following the story.  Catherine Fisher may give you the feeling of holding on by your fingertips but by the time the book ends, you'll want to reread it right then and there.

Book Info
  • pages - hardcover, 464
  • publisher - Dial
  • genre - fantasy/sci-fi
  • received via - Borders
  • series
    • Incarceron
    • Sapphique