Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

Lockdown by Alexander Gordon Smith

November 11th, 2010 by Debbie's World of Books


Source: Bought from Amazon

Availability: In stores now

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars

Description from Furnace Penitentiary: the world’s most secure prison for young offenders, buried a mile beneath the earth’s surface. Convicted of a murder he didn’t commit, sentenced to life without parole, “new fish” Alex Sawyer knows he has two choices: find a way out, or resign himself to a death behind bars, in the darkness at the bottom of the world. Except in Furnace, death is the least of his worries. Soon Alex discovers that the prison is a place of pure evil, where inhuman creatures in gas masks stalk the corridors at night, where giants in black suits drag screaming inmates into the shadows, where deformed beasts can be heard howling from the blood-drenched tunnels below. And behind everything is the mysterious, all-powerful warden, a man as cruel and dangerous as the devil himself, whose unthinkable acts have consequences that stretch far beyond the walls of the prison. Together with a bunch of inmates—some innocent kids who have been framed, others cold-blooded killers—Alex plans an escape. But as he starts to uncover the truth about Furnace’s deeper, darker purpose, Alex’s actions grow ever more dangerous, and he must risk everything to expose this nightmare that’s hidden from the eyes of the world.

This book is another great addition to the dystopian collection.

The setting: Imagine a world where teenage violence has gotten so bad that a teenager can be sentenced to life in a prison located underground and would probably scare even the most hardened adult prisoner.  If that isn’t bad enough throw in some supernatural seeming animals and people.

Who are they?: No one has ever been able to escape from The Furnace and recently the “new fish” arriving there are mostly made up of teen age boys who have been framed in crimes they did not commit.  Why were they chosen and what will happen to them in the Furnace?  Even though the prisoners are all teens I think adults will also find this world fascinating and I would not be surprised if many of the factions and actions that take place were the same if this were a prison for adults.   Many of the boys have joined together in various “gangs” that rule what they can in this nightmare of a place or serve as protection from other gangs.  Unfortunately for Alex he quickly finds himself on the wrong end of the most powerful gang in the Furnace.  Despite all he goes through Alex doesn’t let himself get beaten down and remains hopeful there is some way to escape.   The rest of the cast of characters are also fascinating.  I love his cell mate and even the villains will keep you guessing as to what they will do next.

The story was great and keeps you hooked.  Of course it ends on a cliff hanger and makes you wonder what will happen next.  If you haven’t checked this one out yet it’s one to add to your list.

Posted in 3 Star Books, Books, Dystopia

2 Responses

  1. Pam

    Wow, this sounds like it might did for the prison system what Hunger Games did for war. Looks interesting!

  2. dsuzuki

    Definitely wasn’t as gripping as The Hunger Games but this was definitely more on the creepy side.

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