I read this book for three reasons:
1) The cover caught my eye.
2) I need to read more “guy” books.
3) Eric Luper told me to! 😉
14-year-old Alex and his best friend, Toby, used to break into houses for fun. The fun came to a screeching halt, though, on the night when Toby got killed and Alex was framed for his murder. Despite his insistence that he was innocent, Alex was sentenced to a life term in Furnace Penitentiary.
Upon arrival, Alex recognizes that Furnace is far worse than a “normal” prison. This underground prison has only one elevator to get in or out, and it’s guarded by the surgically-altered “blacksuits” and freaky, skinless dogs. Alex has to live among scary gangs of inmates who would think nothing of killing anyone who crosses them. He has to eat disgusting, ground-up goo that I can’t imagine feeding to a dog. And, to make matters even worse, he has to live in constant fear of the “wheezers” that come in the middle of the night to randomly collect prisoners who never reappear. Alex NEEDS to find a way out, but everyone swears there isn’t one. Considering that the other alternatives are life in Furnace and death, Alex is willing to take his chances.