Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher [Review]

Incarceron (Incarceron, #1)4 out of 5 Robots!

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher
Series: Incarceron #1
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Release: January26, 2010
Hardcover: 442 Pages
Publisher: Dial
My Copy: Purchased
Reviewer: Shannon
Buy the Book: Amazon

Book Summary:
A thrilling, high-concept fantasy for fans of Garth Nix and Nancy Farmer.

Incarceron is a prison so vast that it contains not only cells, but also metal forests, dilapidated cities, and vast wilderness. Finn, a seventeen-year-old prisoner, has no memory of his childhood and is sure that he came from Outside Incarceron. Very few prisoners believe that there is an Outside, however, which makes escape seems impossible.

And then Finn finds a crystal key that allows him to communicate with a girl named Claudia. She claims to live Outside- she is the daughter of the Warden of Incarceron, and doomed to an arranged marriage. Finn is determined to escape the prison, and Claudia believes she can help him. But they don't realize that there is more to Incarceron than meets the eye. Escape will take their greatest courage and cost more than they know.
(Courtesy of the Publisher)
Shannon's Thoughts:
This was one of the most imaginative and unique books I’ve read recently.  Catherine Fisher creates two incredibly vivid worlds.  In one world, the “Outside” is locked in a time warp where modern machines and conveniences are not allowed.  The other world takes place inside the prison Incarceron.  Incarceron is like a social experiment gone wrong.  All the criminals, radicals, and undesirables were placed inside the prison to form a new society.  The outside world thinks Incarceron is a type of utopia, but the prison's residents know better.  Even more disturbing is that Incarceron is actually alive and likes to play with the lives of its prisoners.   

Again, Fisher’s imagine is off the charts in Incarceron.  But there was something keeping me from loving it.  Admittedly, there was so much going on that I had a hard time following the plot completely.  And at times, it felt overly long.  While I enjoyed the characters,  I didn’t fall in love with the characters like I have in other series.   I felt like I was kept at arm’s length.  But I will say that I was kept guessing the whole time.  I was never sure what was going to happen or whether to believe character’s motives.  That, in and of itself, made for an exciting read.

Fans of Steampunk and Sci-Fi will probably enjoy this book.  It is more involved and complicated than a typical YA novel and those that find fantasy YA to be too simplistic, will probably find Incarceron to be more complex.

Books in the series in the order they should be read:
1. Incarceron
2. Sapphique


  1. I read this one awhile back and felt very similarly. There were some really good parts but I never quite connected to the story for whatever reasons. I'm still planning on going back and reading the sequel at some point though. Great review!

  2. This sounds like such a complicated plot, when I read in your review that Incarceron is alive though it definitely intrigued me. I'm interested to see how the author wrote this story. Great review!



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