The Fortress, written by the fantastic S.A. Jones, whose books I will hunt down and devour, is set in a pretend world where there is ‘normal’ society and then there is the Fortress. Set in an off limits part of the city, The Fortress is run solely by women for women. Little is known about the Fortress or how it functions, but there are plenty of rumours.
Jonathan Bridge lives in the real world, where he cheats on his pregnant wife at every opportunity and possibly sexually assaults them too. He is an upper class brat who believes the world is his oyster, and his alone. Until his wife has enough and send him to the Fortress – a punishment that can be put into place for men who cannot behave. We follow Jonathon on his year in the Fortress, where he shares his time with paedophiles, sex offenders and other men who have cheated. In the Fortress the women, who are ranked and have privileges according to their rank, are able to do as they like to the men – often perpetrating the same acts the men are themselves in there for. Over 12 months Jonathon grows and learns a new way of life, interacts with men who have nothing and learns the power of women.
The Fortress was an incredible read for me – I’m not much into futuristic books but this one I couldn’t put down. The power of the women in the Fortress and the ways they manipulate, abuse and perpetrate is confronting and graphic, which adds colour and controversy to the book. Not for the faint hearted, The Fortress is one of my top books so far this year.