Friday, October 4, 2013

The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan

The Panopticon
by Jenni Fagan

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Just released: July 2013
Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
Genre: Thriller, YA
Hardback: 304 pages
Rating: 4

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Anais Hendricks, fifteen, is in the back of a police car. She is headed for the Panopticon, a home for chronic young offenders. She can't remember what’s happened, but across town a policewoman lies in a coma and Anais’s school uniform is covered in blood.

Raised in foster care from birth and moved through twenty-three placements before she even turned seven, Anais has been let down by just about every adult she has ever met. Now a counter-culture outlaw, she knows that she can only rely on herself. And yet despite the parade of horrors visited upon her early life, she greets the world with the witty, fierce insight of a survivor.

Anais finds a sense of belonging among the residents of the Panopticon – they form intense bonds, and she soon becomes part of an ad hoc family. Together, they struggle against the adults that keep them confined. When she looks up at the watchtower that looms over the residents though, Anais knows her fate: she is an anonymous part of an experiment, and she always was. Now it seems that the experiment is closing in.

Named one of the best books of the year by the Times Literary Supplement and the Scotsman, The Panopticon is an astonishingly haunting, remarkable debut novel. In language dazzling, energetic and pure, it introduces us to a heartbreaking young heroine and an incredibly assured and outstanding new voice in fiction.


My two-bits:
got class
Written with scottish dialect/accent, this story tugged at me and made me want to reach out and just hug the gal. She's tough. She's high. She's messed up, yeah. But as the other characters in the story say, she's got that special something.

There is a bit of turn at the end. I was left with a HUH? But, a good huh. Had to re-read that bit a couple times over.

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* review copy courtesy of publisher

* part of event: Gone Girl Girls


  1. Sounds like the female lead is a helluva character! Great review!


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