Anthony Routledge has been sentence for a crime he didn't commit. Such was the severity of the crime he gets sent to the highest prison of the land, a penal colony on a small island where the only rule is the rule of the island.
This story cares little about Routledge's innocence, although it does form the basis of his "goodness" amongst such evil humans.
I enjoyed this story as a microcosm of human life when all you have is what's available on the land (and a few requests that you might or might not get). Life on the island is quite black and white. Would you cope with a structured society even if you didn't like the rules or would you prefer every man for himself?
Most stories I read I don't think of the characters when I'm not reading, but my mind kept wandering back to this one.