Friday, January 22, 2010

Book Review: Furnace: Lockdown

I had this book in my massive TBR pile that was slowly creeping up to a ridiculous number. So, I organized them by the due dates back to the library. If the book did not grab my interest in the first 30 minutes of reading, then I put it in the pile to be returned. Lockdown was the first to be read and I will tell you that I could not put this one down. This is my type of book.

Lockdown is full of action with a main character who has been sent to the Furnace for a crime he did not commit. Now, he is far from a saint, but he does not deserve the punishment he has to endure in the Furnace. The characters are awesome and brutal(all males), the location is described as worse than the bowels of hell, gang fights, lockdowns, scary, nasty creatures of all types, and a perfectly dark and isolated setting.

The author, Alexander Gordon Smith, has a deranged mind to come up with some of the scenes in this book. The main character, Alex, is a bully at his school. He breaks into the homes of people and steals money and anything else that he wants. However, despite the fact that he is not a likable character in the beginning, the author uses his genius writing skills to have you root for this character as the story progresses. The world of the Furnace is so nasty that you Alex becomes a character that you really end up liking.

The Furnace is a perfect landscape for this novel. Thousands of boys of all ages sent to live in this hole that is way below the surface of earth. Nobody knows what goes on in the Furnace and nobody cares. No prisoner has ever escaped unless you count the boys who jump to their death.

There are reasons that the Furnace has been created. You can read about it in the book, but people have no mercy on criminals after the Summer of Slaughter. The Furnace is where you remain as a punishment until you die.

Read this book. If you like action, a great cast of characters, dark, dreary places, fighting, and very nasty creatures like dogs with no skin where you can see all the bones and muscles working, then you will love this book. You will be even more excited to know the sequel will be released later this year.

I would recommend this book for ages 12 and up. There is not bad language or hard reading material, bu the situations could scare some kids. I am not here to cause nightmares, but this book could scare some kids who don't like vicious creatures and have a fear of the dark. This book is your worst nightmare coming true. There are elements of The Running Man, Shawshank Redemption and Resident Evil (yes, those nasty dogs!) combined with an imagination of Guilermo Del Toro. You will not be disappointed in this read.

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