Wednesday, June 6, 2012

"Incarceron" by Catherine Fisher

Walls have ears.
Doors have eyes.
Trees have voices.
Beasts tell lies.
Beware the rain.
Beweare the snow.
Beware the man
You think you know.
~Songs of Sapphique

Incarceron is a prison. Built to contain the undesirables of a world, it's huge. Vast enough to contain cities, mountains, oceans, valleys. Built to be a paradise, Incarceron has become a hell, and there is no escaping. Trapped until they die, most of the inmates have given up on leaving.
But not Finn.

In the Outside, time seems to have been stopped at the 17th century. Artificially preserved, Claudia's world is run by computers and protocal. She's doomed to an arranged marriage and tangled with an assassination plot she doesn't support but doesn't discourage either.

When the lives of Finn and Claudia collide, there's no telling what will happen.
Incarceron is everywhere.
Incarceron is everything.

They stared at the dark slit, waiting. She half expected a crowd of Prisoners to burst through.
But nothing happened, so she stepped forward, and opened the gate.
And looked Inside.

This book was rather rare for a couple of reasons. First of all, it's a YA book that I actually enjoyed. Second of all, there were several plot twists I didn't predict, and third of all, I only hated one of the characters.

The setting of this book is very interesting. It's a peculiar mix of Gregor the Underlander, 2001: A Space Oddyssey, Labyrinth, Alice in Wonderland, The Supernaturalist, Doctor Who, and a whole lot of imagination. It was fascinating if only for the setting, and I enjoyed it immensely. Incarceron was spooky, and reminded me a bit of HAL, which captured my interest immediately. If nothing, read for Incarceron!

The characters were interesting as well. It was difficult, but I decided that my three favorite characters were Keiro (Finn's oathbrother), Jared (Claudia's tutor), and The Warden (Claudia's father.). The single character that I truly did not like at all was Attia, who I found to be jealous, petty, stuck up, "holier than thou", and just annoying. But the others were pretty cool, I must say.

Also, the plot twists. I'm usually pretty good at predicting the way that books will go. In fact, some of the earlier twists I predicted immediately, but about three fourths of the book the author threw a twist at me that literally left me sitting and going "Wow. I did not see that coming. Wow. Wow. O.o". The plot is interesting, not very predictable, and has plenty of things going on that it moves quite quickly.

Overall, this was a really good book, and I'm definitely going to read the second one. :)

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