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The Panopticon

A Novel

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


Named one of Granta's Best of Young British Novelists

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 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 counterculture 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. But when she looks up at the watchtower that looms over the residents, Anais realizes her fate: She is an anonymous part of an experiment, and she always was. Now it seems that the experiment is closing in.

Now with Extra Libris material, including a reader’s guide and bonus content

From Publishers Weekly

May 13, 2013 – After an altercation with authorities leaves an officer in a coma, 15-year-old Anais Hendricks finds herself shuttled off to the Panopticon, a care center for young, chronic offenders modeled after the prison designs of English philosopher Jeremy Bentham. Amid the institution’s crescent-shaped buildings and all-seeing watchtower, Anais befriends a group of ragtag ruffians and delves into her past, endlessly stoned and concerned she’s being watched by an entity she calls “the experiment.” Fagan’s debut, voiced in a frenetic, robust Scottish inflection, weaves together mystery and coming-of-age elements to create a tale filled with dread and humor. Though Anais tries to clear her name and remember what transpired between her and the injured officer (she was under the influence at the time) the novel dwells less on her fate and finds stronger focus on the bonds between residents. Fagan constantly fluctuates between scenes of distress—as when a stoned resident leaps from a window—and scenes of typical teenager behavior: smoking, dating, debating about superpowers, and playing Truth or Dare? Anais’s story is one of abandonment, loss, and redemption, well suited for a paranoid age in which society finds itself constantly under the microscope.

Customer Reviews


Jenni Fagan has grasped the essentials of writing and run with the weaving like no other!!! Thank you, Jenni Fagan

The Panopticon

I'd like my money back on this one. The book bears little resemblance to the description that enticed me to buy it.


I can't remember the last time I gave up on a book but I made it 20 pages into this one and quit. I doubt I will ever force myself to read the whole thing.

The Panopticon
View in iTunes
  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Fiction & Literature
  • Published: Jul 23, 2013
  • Publisher: Crown/Archetype
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 320 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings

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