I caught this book by chance at the book store in Peterborough. I was bored and scrolling through books, so I picked this one up, read the back, and to my surprise, the main character's name is Will Drake. My same first name. He doesn't believe in impossible, and neither do I. He's famous for breaking out of three prisons in a row, staying just a little while for each one, one of which he tells everybody that he just walked out the front door, everyone saying it was impossible. At the start of The Rig, we know nothing about why Drake here ever got the gavel. Then gradually, we start guessing, first off knowing that he has to escape from this prison or else- well, he knows, but we don't, but we're still on the same side as him. The Rig is a prison with everyone wearing tracker watches, the prison being an oil factory in the past, still giving off an aroma. It's at the Arctic Ocean, bringing three big problems if you decided to swim somewhere: Hungry sharks, hundreds of miles of swimming, and of course, freezing to death. And those tracker watches are never taken off.
The Rig also holds a secret. One word: Mutation. The workers of this ridiculous prison are harbouring an interesting crystal that gives an ability that kids can absorb either better or even have the health to. Sound familiar to an earlier review? If you visit my site once in a while, you know enough about Escape from Furnace. Except The Rig does not rely on horror and is not as terrible a prison as Furnace. Every inmate that is on the helicopter on the first day is sentenced to five years there, no more, no less. There, you have to pay for sleep, meals and candy by doing jobs. And let's say that after the first day, Drake isn't going to afford to buy himself a Mars bar. Not everyone working at The Rig is a bad person. There's a doctor like Sara Tancredi from Prison Break at the prison named Dr. Lambros, a gentle and kind nurse that still discourages escape. In the book, we learn more and more about Drake and his cellmate, Michael Tristan, a kind but regretful kid.
Even though half of the book is trying to get past Step 1 of an escape plan and just doing time, cleaning sewage pipes and playing with the other inmates, The Rig makes none of the mistakes it could have made. Will, Michael, and a girlfriend by the name of Irene, explore under elevators and climbing over locked doors, playing games and laughing. And the ending brings hope and joy despite the fact that three murderers are now in hiding and they didn't think about a crying blonde, and brings every reason to wait for Joe Ducie's upcoming sequel, Crystal Force.
Everyone knows that a prison escape takes time, but we don't want to feel that time like the prisoners do, but we still want to feel it a little. Everyone knows that anyone captured ruins everything, even if some got out. Everyone knows that the main character needs an important reason to escape other than joy. Everyone knows that there should be some drama, but not so much, that everyone gets distracted from the hope of escape. There are a lot of prison escape stories, real and made up, and a lot more will come, but I doubt any one will ever come along that's better and makes as much right choices as The Rig.