Skip to main content

Solitary


Solitary is the second book in the six book YA series Escape From Furnace, by Alexander Gordon Smith.

So, ya'll remember my review of Lockdown, the first book in this series? Well, if you don't you can read it here. But to summarize a bit, it was freaky. Freaked me out. Lol. Makes me wonder if Alexander Gordon Smith gets nightmares from his own novel.

If you haven't read Lockdown you should definitely avoid this review, as it will contain inevitable spoilers from the end of Lockdown. So, scurry along now, all right? ;)

All of you who read Lockdown probably don't need much convincing or description of Solitary to check it out. Instead I'll just remind of how Lockdown ended - Fourteen-year-old Alex, framed for the murder of his best friend and thrown in Furnace Penitentiary, was desperate to successfully, improbably escape from the Furnace - something no one has ever done. With him, he had the following fellow prisoners: violent and unstable Gary (that blackmailed his way onto the team of escapees), Zee, and Toby. They broke through the walls and got access to the raging river they hoped would lead them to freedom.

Well, I'm just gonna let you think this through for yourselves... six books in the series, and Alex escapes in the first one? Um, yeah. Doesn't go so well. I won't give you any details, but the title screams at where Alex ends up. That's right. The dreaded, horrifying solitary confinement...

After the first book, I was a bit apprehensive of what Solitary was going to have in store for me - but I also really wanted to read it. And I'm sure I'm not alone.

Thing is, despite being extremely creepy, the beginning of the novel lacks the true suspense it could have had by giving away their apparent eventual capture with the title and jacket description. Like I said, most of us probably would have guessed they'd get caught, but it takes away the hope of their success, which was too bad.

But beyond that, the horrors of Furnace are still, well, horrifying. And the mental anguish of solitary is palpable and spine-tingling, though the transition back to this world didn't feel smooth to me, and at first less intense. Yet notice, I said at first. That's right. It came back pretty darn fast.

Jarringly freaky and admittedly nerve-wracking, Smith is skilled at creeping you out and putting the reader right there with Alex, whether you wanna be or not. Plus, the unexpected new form of possible hope is original, and both scared and enthralled me.

Solitary is engrossing, sickening, and effective. Need more adjectives? How about: shocking, revolting, dire, and flat-out crazy! And the cliffhanger ending leaves you feeling like you're actually hanging off a cliff - by a fingertip.

I don't want to give more away and ruin all the twisted twists. It's a horror book at its core, and a thriller in its execution. That sound like you're cupcake of choice? Check it out. Meanwhile, I'll be keeping an eye out for the next book coming out in April 2011 with the oh-so-ominous title Death Sentence.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Reckless

Reckless is a YA fantasy adventure by the ever-revered (for good reason) Cornelia Funke.

Jacob Reckless has been passing through a mirror portal in his father's forgotten (or, rather, ignored) study for years now. After his father disappeared and his mother became a shell of her former self, he found it. Since then, it's been hard to stay tethered to his world - instead, he's become more and more connected to the alternative option.

In fact, he's managed to make a name for himself as a treasure hunter. And always by his side is a loyal vixen named Fox, a shape-shifter. She's probably the closest thing he has to a friend - but Jacob still considers himself a loner. But he's become comfortable with the different creatures, monsters, and magic this world has to offer - even though right now they are at war with a stone people called Goyl. None of that interests him. He just seeks out his mysterious objects and fetches good prices.

But that's all about to change. …

Real Live Boyfriends

Real Live Boyfriends is a YA contemporary novel by E. Lockhart, and the fourth novel in the Ruby Oliver quartet.

Here we are on the last day of “Ruby Oliver Week” and if you aren’t already reading these books – well, why not?

But I’m more than sure most of you are – and hopefully you’re all caught up, and therefore not at risk of being spoiled by my review of Real Live Boyfriends. You’ve been warned!

Ruby Oliver is beginning her senior year of high school with a real live boyfriend: Noel.

At least she thought she was.

After having spent the rest of junior year and the beginning of summer being fully in love (okay, they never actually said the word, but the vibes were strongly in that direction), Ruby is now confused.

Again.

When Noel went to visit his brother in New York for a while, almost every day they talked on the phone and exchanged funny emails. She never once felt insecure.

Until all of a sudden – communication stopped. Ruby would call and he wouldn’t answer. She’d leave a voice mai…

Titanic: S.O.S.

S.O.S. is the third and final book in Gordon Korman's middle-grade Titanic trilogy.

This is the third book in a trilogy, book addicts! You must, I repeat, must read the first two books (Unsinkable and Collision Course) before you read this review. Otherwise you are just going to ruin all the twists! Sure, we know the Titanic sinks - but the surprises that are revealed about our characters, among other things, should not be spoiled!

But all of you that have read the first two books (which I hope are many of you, because this a great series), can rest assured that I won't spoil anything from S.O.S. itself - just a basic recap and my opinion.

Here goes:

The Titanic is sinking. No one wants to believe it, but the bow is almost imperceptibly starting to dip into the freezing Atlantic Ocean - and our four main characters are thrown into a race for survival.

Paddy is locked up below deck, having finally been caught as a stowaway. In one cell over are the very criminals that wish him dead…