Great Reads for Teens and Tweens!

Helping you make an informed decision about that book

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher

on February 1, 2012

Title: Incarceron

Author: Catherine Fisher

Publisher: Penguin Group Year: 2011

ISBN: 9780803733961

Genre: Science fiction / fiction

Age: 12 and up

Awards: Amazon Best Books of the Month, February 2010

Subject/themes: Young Adult Fiction, Science Fiction, Fantasy


Plot Summary:

Incarceron is a prison like no other. Imagine a prison with no guards or bars but a futuristic and artificial world containing forests of metal trees, cities, oceans and the ever watchful red-eye. Incarceron has been sealed for centuries and escape is only a dream that few believe in and supposedly achieved by only one man, the legendary Sapphique. However, prisoner and “Starseer” Finn, has no recollection of his past and strongly believes he is from the Outside.

Outside is a world that was once a realm of advanced technology and discovery but is now trapped in the 17th century because time has been forbidden in an effort to save humanity. Claudia, daughter of the Warden of Incarceron, is tangled in an arranged marriage to the (wrongful) heir of the throne and an assassination plot against the queen. She is suspicious of the death of Giles, her original betrothed and rightful heir to the throne, and believes the answers to her questions lie within Incarceron.

With the help of a few friends and crystal keys, Finn and Claudia must work together to save each other and discover who they really are.

My take:

This book was AMAZING and will seriously blow your minds! At first the idea of two separate worlds existing within one world was hard to wrap my brain around and I would stop and think to myself, “Isn’t Incarceron suppose to be a prison?” But I strongly urge readers to keep reading and it will all begin to make sense, I promise.

Incarceron was supposed to be a grand experiment where “undesireables” would be removed from our world and placed within its boundaries with everything needed to create a utopia. 150 years after it was sealed, the Outside still consider Incarceron to be a success, however the prison has become a complete failure. Violence and tyranny are rampant, resources have dwindled, and the prison has developed its own self-awareness. And yet no one, not even the Warden does anything about it. Yet on the Outside, things are just  as restrictive as being in a prison. Although advanced technologies and science once flourished, it has been forbidden by the king and the world has plunged back into the 17th century. Strict protocols must be followed at all times and resentment grows among the nobles. Imagine having to wash clothes by hand or not being able to drive a car but knowing those technologies exist.

The details to describe these two worlds is superb and the relationship between the characters is both breathtaking and heartbreaking. Claudia is easily my favorite character because she is strong, stubborn, spunky, and intelligent. Finn, on the other hand, is not very strong but I found his reliability and compassion for his friends, despite their vices to be relatable.

Rating: 4.5 / 5 stars. This book had the ability to get a five star rating if some parts of it weren’t super confusing and didn’t require me to reread sections.

Similar in style and theme to : The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins


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