Review: Fugitives

Fugitives by Alexander Gordon Smith will be released in the U.S. on February 28, 2012 in hardcover and eBook formats. It is currently available to pre-order online in both formats at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux Books for Young Readers, a division of Macmillan, the print edition is 288 pages.

Fugitives is the fourth book in the Escape from Furnace series by author Alexander Gordon Smith. Execution, the final book in the series will be released in the U.S. this fall.

*** Goodreads description is slightly spoiler-y ***

Goodreads description:

Forever altered by his experience in Furnace Penetentiary, Alex has done the impossible and escaped. But the battle for freedom is only just beginning.

Charged with his superhuman abilities, Alex must uncover the last of Furnace’s secrets—the truth about the man who built the prison, the man known as Alfred Furnace. And to do that he must stop running and finally confront his greatest fears.


They somehow made it past the Warden. They even managed to elude the berserkers. They could see the sky and feel the sun and air on their faces. They had freedom in their sights.

All they had to do was stay hidden and not get caught.

But how could they remain free when there was nowhere to hide? Where could they go when the world was on fire and the enemy was closing in?

And were they really free in the first place when the world outside of Furnace Penitentiary simply felt like an even larger prison with Alfred Furnace calling all the shots?

They may have thought they earned their freedom, but freedom always comes with a price. And the cost may be more than any of them are willing or able to pay.


Fugitives is every bit as dark, dangerous, chilling, exciting and brimming with action as each of its predecessors. Author Alexander Gordon Smith has managed to squeeze in what feels like a lifetime of activity into less than one day in the life of his characters, making this one incredibly fast and furious read.

Once again there is no break in the timeline. Fugitives picks up right where Death Sentence left off with the mass exodus at Furnace Penitentiary. But while the inmates may have freed themselves from Furnace, it does not mean they’re free.

As the title suggests, they’re fugitives. But it’s not just the law they have to worry about. Alfred Furnace is coming. He sees this as the perfect opportunity to send out his creations. To test their abilities. To show the world their power. And to get back what’s his.

No longer constrained by the world within Furnace Penitentiary’s walls, Fugitives introduces readers to new places, new characters and new dangers. And with the atrocities that took place in Furnace now exposed for the world to see, everything quickly descends into chaos.

Alexander Gordon Smith has written yet another book in this series that continues to surprise. The world he’s created has gotten darker and deadlier with each book, with an even more dire predicament and even less of a chance at a happy ending. And Fugitives is definitely his darkest, bloodiest and most terrifying book yet in this series.

From the outset, the author tosses readers right into the middle of the fray and keeps them there to the bitter end so they can experience just what it’s like to be on the run, hunted, and facing a never-before-seen enemy with an ability that could change the fate of the entire world.

Fugitives is riveting, suspenseful, intense, shocking, brutal and gruesome. It leaves readers on the side of a pretty big cliff awaiting the final book in the series. There are quite a few twists and turns, many things left up in the air and many questions still unanswered about the man that is Alfred Furnace and the fate of Alex Sawyer.

As with all three previous books in the series, Fugitives is an absolute must read.

Reviewer gives this book…

On a personal note:

This far into the series I had some idea of where this next book would be headed. Especially after I read the sneak peek at the end of Death Sentence. I knew that things would only get darker. I knew that I wouldn’t be left smiling.

What I didn’t realize is just how absolutely insane things would get in this book. The entire book crammed in so much action into such a very short time span. So many, many things changed – for the worse, of course – in just a blink of an eye.

It was sheer chaos. Madness. Hopelessness, though not complete hopelessness. Because with each and every one of these books, I am always hopeful. I’m hopeful that things will work out. I’m hopeful for a happy ending. Yet I know I’m deluding myself.

I read the entire book in total suspense. Waiting for a confrontation. Waiting for something really bad to happen. I started getting that sinking feeling in my stomach early on and it just kept growing until that really bad thing did happen. And I was devastated.

There are so many things I want to talk about. But nearly everything will spoil the earlier books in the series and quite a few of those things will spoil what happens in Fugitives. Which is why my personal opinions section keeps shrinking and gets more cryptic with each book I read. Not because there’s not even more to talk about, but because I can’t.

What I will say is that even though the events take place in such a short amount of time, the story definitely gets moved forward. Pretty significantly, actually. And some seriously major stuff happens to the characters. But even more major stuff happens in their world.

All my “favorite” characters are back – Alfred Furnace, Warden Cross, the dogs, the rats, the berserkers and the wheezers. And if you haven’t guessed by now, there is once again a new kind of baddie. A more dangerous, more horrific, nightmarish type of being that is even more dead set on destruction.

The lead up to the ending and the ending itself are shocking, gruesome and completely nerve-wracking. The action throughout the story made me devour this book at record speed. And I could not put it down until I read the entire sneak peek for the next book in the series. Because the way things were left… Oh no!

Every single book in this series so far made me cheer, made me hold my breath in anticipation, made me cringe with disgust, kept me hopeful for something better for the characters, left me heartbroken when things just sometimes got worse, and made me wonder what could possibly happen next. Fugitives was definitely no exception.

I am dying to find out how the series ends, and after seeing that there is an epilogue on the author’s website, I’m so so tempted to read that now. I really hope that Alfred Furnace and his seriously creepy army of black suits and other monstrosities don’t come out the victors, even if it means losing a few of my favorite characters along the way. I’m really not so sure I can wait until the fall to get my hands on this book….

Though, as desperate as I am to read Execution, I am also sad that the next book will be the last book in the series and that I will have to leave this world and these characters behind.

I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again… This series is so awesome and was a total surprise in the very best way when I discovered it last fall. It tops quite a few lists and will forever be a series that I consider a favorite. And I really don’t want to have to say goodbye.


I had a tough time choosing between my two favorite non-spoiler-y passages. This is one of them:

I didn’t look back. I was too scared to. If I’d taken one last gaze at the sunlight, at the glorious day that sat at my back, then I might have lost my courage, I might have turned tail and bolted. I kept my head forward, my jaw clenched so tight it felt as though my teeth might snap, my arm held out like a sword, trembling as it sliced apart the shadows of the doorway, opening up the darkness as I stepped inside.

Places to stalk:

If you’d like to stalk the author on Twitter.

If you’d like to stalk the author on his Website.

Be sure to check out The Night Children a novella in the Escape from Furnace series that can be read online at, HERE.

Book trailer for the Escape from Furnace series:

My Escape from Furnace reviews:

If you’d like to check out my review for Lockdown, the first book in the series, click here.

If you’d like to read my review for Solitary, book two, click here.

If you’d like to read my review for Death Sentence, book three, click here.


This review is based on an eARC I received from Macmillan and NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Previous Post Next Post

You may also like


All content - except for guest posts and guest reviews - has been written by me and can not be copied or used without permission. All graphics and images used on my site – aside from book covers used for purposes of discussion – have either been given to me by authors, publishers or bloggers for guest posts, blog tours, interviews or promotion, have been sourced, have been designed by me or have been purchased for my exclusive use. Aside from images with a “grab code” beneath, no images can be used or displayed without permission.


All reviews on this website are unbiased and reviewers are in no way compensated for their reviews by the author, publisher, or any other agencies. While some reviews may be based on receipt of ARC copies of an authors work, a fair and impartial review is always given by the reviewer. Most of the reviews, however, are based upon books purchased after publication date.