Another of those books that I have on my shelf with no real memory of where the recommendation came from.

The story follows the tale of two protagonists who are separated but linked, one living in the faux 17th century outside of Incarceron — a giant, self-aware prison set up as an Eden and rehabilitation project for the world’s criminals — and one trapped inside, in what is decidedly not a paradise.

There’s plenty of interesting ideas here, both in terms of a vast, AI-controlled prison and the mirror provided by Protocol, which is its own form of prison for those forced to obey an outdated societal structure.

I found it a good read, if the constant need to supply a crisis and the random wanderings into locations that had no bearing on the story did prove a little wearisome (how often can a ‘best friend’ turn on people or be feared of doing so?).

It rattled along nicely without providing much of a challenge, or a huge amount of depth. Nice to see a strong female character who wasn’t sidelined, even if she is a princess.

I did find myself rapidly turning pages as the story builds to its climax, which is a good sign I was hooked.

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Reviewed: 11th September 2015