Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Book Review: Sapphique

Sapphique by Catherine Fisher (sequel to Incarceron)

Check it out here!

Description: Picking up after the surprising revelations of Incarceron, Fisher abruptly returns readers to the dystopian world and its living prison. Still trapped inside, Attia and Keiro are doing whatever they can to survive on their quest to find the Outside. Finn, meanwhile, has escaped and is now preparing to take his place on the Realm's throne. Not completely convinced, Claudia and Jared are attempting to groom Finn to take his place as Prince Giles. Things are almost on track when a Pretender makes a bid for the throne, threatening both Finn's and Claudia's lives. Amid the discordance in the Realm, Incarceron itself hunts for Sapphique's famed glove, an object that may help the prison gain a human body. Now, Attia, Keiro, and the Warden are attempting to keep the glove from Incarceron, while Finn, Jared, and Claudia are trying to hold the Realm together from the Outside.

Review: Sapphique has many of the same characteristics that made Incarceron so addictively readable and frustrating...but really, I should be used to it by now, right?  Fisher's trademark style of alternating story lines that always end in cliffhangers is killer.  What is new though, is the emotional depth of some of the characters.  Surprising characters too--the Prison itself becomes one of the most fascinating examples.  If you're a Jared fan (who isn't), he's given a lot more face time this time around, and Keiro's struggle with his halfman identity is subtle but pretty powerfulI'll try not to give away too much here, but I don't think it will be that hard...having just finished the book, I'm having difficulty wrapping my mind around everything that happened.  When reality emerges and illusions dissolve, Finn and co. (and me) are left wondering what's real and what's imagined.  How do we delude ourselves to make life more bearable?  There's a lot left unsaid and unresolved.  Fisher originally meant for Incarceron to be a standalone novel.  The addition of a second book allowed her to expand the story of Incarceron, but it also led me to believe the series would become a trilogy (like many fantasy books).  This is so hard to say, because I reeeeeallly want there to be a third book, but I'm glad there's only two.  It ends right where it needs to to keep me wondering.

Reviewed by Sam

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