Tuesday

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher

Wow! What a hot mess this book was... and I mean that in a good way. Catherine Fisher has quite an imagination on her. This is the story of Claudia and Finn and how their worlds collide.

Incarceron - a prison created to house outcasts, thieves, lowlifes, scum, in other words, the undersirables. It was a means to an end - they needed a place to house the overpopulation from their prisons and they came up with Incarceron. A prison that could not only house their criminals - with no entrance nor a way to escape, its location is unknown - but it is said to be a perfect world. Talk about a bad idea... It's been centuries since the prison's doors were sealed and with the prison having a mind of its own, it has become vengeful, jaded and torments its inhabitants with its ever-seeing, all-knowing eyes. The prisoners are not living together in perfect harmony - their lives are horrible and gruesome. The things they must do to survive alone are unimagineable. Those who live in the prison dream of the world Outside - although they really don't know if there is an "outside". All they know is that Sapphique - one of the prisoner's escaped and with this tale of Sapphique's perilous journey, they find hope. Finn is one of these prisoners. 


Imagine a futuristic world run by computers and technology but whose residents live their lives as if it were the 17th century. Yep. This "protocol" is overlooked by certain peers of the higher society, but most of the people live under these guidelines. Claudia - the warden of Incarceron's daughter - lives under such protocol. Although she is free and on the "outside" she feels that she is prisoner to her father's whims. At seventeen, she is the perfect age to wed her betrothed, the annoying, immature and utterly spoiled, Prince Caspar. And although she is dreading the day of her nuptials, the warden and the Queen, have both moved up the date and she has no choice but to go along with their plans.

When both Finn and Claudia come across a glass key, whose powers can be nothing less than magical, they find a window into each other's world and are soon caught up in something much more dangerous then either imagined.

This was one of the better fantasy/sci fi books I have recently read. I'm not sure if I would classify it fantasy/sci fi as much as I would say steampunk. I have to say it did start a bit bumpy for me. The first hundred or so pages were sort of slow moving - although I must say that I did enjoy how we first meet Finn. With alternating chapters between both main characters, we get Claudia's chapters which are deliciously full of political intrigue and all sorts of conniving and backstabbing going on; to Finn's chapters which are full of all the adventure, challenges, and monsters you could want. 
 

Although very engrossing, I found this novel to be extremely complex with multiple storylines occurring simultaneously. I enjoyed the basic plot, the world-building was amazing (although I wasn't able to visualize it at all times) and although it had a rough start (for me), it did pick up and it never lost track again jumping from one adventure to the next. I think this would make a great movie and one I would love to see if nothing else than to visualize some of the landscapes described while in Incarceron. I also really became fond of not just the two main characters, but Attia, Keiro, Jared, the warden and even the infamous Sapphique.


I will say there are a lot of questions that were left unanswered but hopefully nothing that won't be answered in the sequel aptly titled, Sapphique. All in all, this was an excellent story - one that lovers of the genre will not only devour but will be left pining for more.

7 comments:

Jessica (BookLover) said...

Great review! I look forward to seeing what Cathering Fisher does with Sapphique.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Oooooo I need to read this! Thank you for the review. For some reason, I don't think I realized it was steampunk. Now I really want it.

Emidy said...

Fabulous review! I love, love, love the sound of the plot... it sounds so compelling. I have to read this!

cynthial11 said...

I am thinking that I want this book now, I loved your review and this is something I would definitely enjoy. =)

christina said...

This sounds absolutely fabulous. Like one of those books that I could pick up and not doing anything else but read until it's done!

Michele at Reader's Respite said...

This has been on my Amazon wishlist since it's day of publication....alas, no one has yet seen fit to buy it for me. I may have to just buy it for myself, lol.

Alison's Book Marks said...

I want to know where I can get a skinwand wrinkle eraser!

Great review!

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