Incarceron is a hard book to score and a harder book to review. On one hand, I really liked the idea. The medieval Outside vs. the steel Inside, both supposed to be a utopia, both a prison. On the other, the characterizations are really shallow and as such, I didn't develop an emotional connection with either main character. Claudia, especially, was unpleasant to read.
There are several issues with the writing. As I said, characterization is poor. Action and fight scenes are confusing and jumbled. Emotions are told, rarely shown. Twists are either telegraphed or out of nowhere. There are plot holes and things that are unexplained. Still, the book is filled with good, interesting ideas that bring a new take to steampunk. The worlds, while not overly developed, make me want to know more about them.
After I finished Incarceron, I tweeted that I didn't know if I liked, loved, or loathed the book. I think I can say I liked it, but I don't think I can say it was overly good.