Book Review: Incarceron

Throughout all of these book reviews, I occasionally mention whenever I read a book alongside my husband or one that he recommends. For example, I read the entire Mortal Instruments series because my husband enthusiastically shoved the first book into my hands during a Barnes and Noble trip. I often prioritize his recommendations because my husband is not a reader. Well, not the kind of reader that am. Admittedly, it is hard to match my enthusiasm for reading, but he is the kind of person who enjoys the occasional book, but it really has to be worth his time. incarceron

In the nearly two and half years that we have been together, my husband and I have often found ourselves wandering bookstores to either kill time or stave off my insatiable book appetite. This was especially so when we were dating. He lived in the barracks and I didn’t want to impose too greatly on the family I stayed with when I visited, so we spent a lot of visits going to movies, wandering the mall, and exploring bookstores. Incarceron by Catherine Fisher was one of the first books Reid recommended to me. I had probably been waxing eloquent about my enthusiasm for dystopian fantasy while browsing shelves in Books-A-Million, when he spotted a title he had read and loved. The first time I read it, I read Incarceron in one sitting while on a (long) bus ride.

That was two years ago. Now, this year, I have read it again, partly because of my self-challenge to read my bookshelf and partly because I finally purchased its sequel, Sapphique. Incarceron is a story of mystery, intrigue, and scandal. There are so many layers to the world Fisher created, I don’t know if you even get to the bottom of it even after reading the sequel.

Incarceron is a prison. It was created as a paradise to house all the criminals of the world, to give them a better life, but away from regular society. But there’s a problem with the experiment. The paradise has broken down, its people live in horror and poverty, and there are even rumors that the prison itself is alive…

Claudia, the daughter of the Warden of Incarceron, has never known anything but wealth and the noble life. But her own life feels like a prison. Although she lives in a futuristic society, she (along with the rest of the world) is forced to live frozen in time, as if in a time long past. She has her own secrets and desires to uncover the secrets of the mysterious Incarceron.

Incarceron tells the story of a girl who wants out of an arranged marriage, a boy trapped in a prison he was possibly never born in, and a kingdom of secrets, both in and out of the prison.

Incarceron by Catherine Fisher gets 5/5 stars.


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