Released: May 3, 2007
Publisher: Dial Books
Series: Incarceron #1
Genre: Adventure, Dystopia, Fantasy, Steampunk
Source: Borrowed -- Library
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, and escape will take their greatest courage and cost more than they know. Because Incarceron is alive.
I will admit that I was bought in by this cover. There are two things that would sell me completely and they are 1: Keys and 2: Pocket Watches. So without a second thought, I picked this up from the shelf on my library and scanned it out.
I hadn't merged with pure fantasy in a while so it was a tough transition going from contemporary and futuristic fiction. The beginning of the book was a slow paced read as you venture back and forth between the POVs of Claudia, the Warden of Incarceron's daughter, and Finn, a prisoner of Incarceron. It roughly took me a few tries and a motivational pep talk to get halfway through. The beginning was the toughest part to get through, it was like trying to fit into that pair of jeans that just quite didn't fit but after jumping around and doing the "pants dance" they went on snugly.
For the characters, the development of emotions and bonds were well progressed, but when it comes to my favorite story to read about it was Claudia. You'd think that reading about Finn, the prisoner trying to escape, would galvanize by interest but it didn't. Claudia's attitude, her spunky nature, and just the tight-knit bond between her and Jared, her tutor, grasped my attention and had me flying through her story. She was a character that I looked up to.
I do recommend this book to true fantasy lovers hoping to dissolve themselves in a new world. Fisher does a wonderful job stitching together two different worlds in one universe. Though I wasn't bought in the beginning, by the end I was sold again and again.
First Line: Finn had been flung on his face and chained to some slabs of the transitway.