Dec 29, 2011

Book Review: Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Enclave by Ann Aguirre
(Razorland, #1)
Release Date: April 12, 2011
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends; 259 pages

In Deuce’s world, people earn the right to a name only if they survive their first fifteen years. By that point, each unnamed ‘brat’ has trained into one of three groups–Breeders, Builders, or Hunters, identifiable by the number of scars they bear on their arms. Deuce has wanted to be a Huntress for as long as she can remember.

As a Huntress, her purpose is clear—to brave the dangerous tunnels outside the enclave and bring back meat to feed the group while evading ferocious monsters known as Freaks. She’s worked toward this goal her whole life, and nothing’s going to stop her, not even a beautiful, brooding Hunter named Fade. When the mysterious boy becomes her partner, Deuce’s troubles are just beginning.

Down below, deviation from the rules is punished swiftly and harshly, and Fade doesn’t like following orders. At first Deuce thinks he’s crazy, but as death stalks their sanctuary, and it becomes clear the elders don’t always know best, Deuce wonders if Fade might be telling the truth. Her partner confuses her; she’s never known a boy like him before, as prone to touching her gently as using his knives with feral grace.

As Deuce’s perception shifts, so does the balance in the constant battle for survival. The mindless Freaks, once considered a threat only due to their sheer numbers, show signs of cunning and strategy… but the elders refuse to heed any warnings. Despite imminent disaster, the enclave puts their faith in strictures and sacrifice instead. No matter how she tries, Deuce cannot stem the dark tide that carries her far from the only world she’s ever known.

I heard about this book by some of the people I was following on twitter pimped it out pretty hardcore. They did their jobs well; it got me interested in the book so I went out and bought it. Great decision on my part. They all said ‘if you loved Hunger Games, you’ll fall in love with ENCLAVE’ so how could I resist when HUNGER GAMES were what got me so addicted to reading?!

Once I started this book, I had a lot of trouble putting it down. I hate when that happens with a book. I know, you’re probably making a face at your computer right now but hear me out. It’s a love/hate thing, really because everyday things get in the way, like work, for instance. But yet, all you want to do is have your nose in this book but you can’t. So it makes things like work move slower because you don’t want to be doing that. You feel me?

First and foremost, I love that the kids are named brats. I mean, seriously…how appropriate! Kids are brats because I was one when I was a kid. (Hell, I probably still am) But when brats are the legit name for a kid in this community, I wanna live there. Second, I am so fascinated by their naming ceremony. I mean, besides the fact that they cut you but how genius is this?! Basically a bunch of a junk from the past (ie: our time) is scattered about and where that first drop of blood falls, that is your name. I mean, could you imagine if I did that and my name became Butterfinger? It’s so tempting to try but I’m a baby when it comes to pain so I’ll just pretend my name would be Butterfinger (only because I love them so). Genius. Absolute genius.

So we move past two of my favorite aspects of the beginning of the book and we move forward. Deuce is a huntress; that is her life now that she has been named (graduated from being a brat, yay for her). Her best friend is Stalker (who is a breeder and I’m sure you can guess what his job is). She ends up getting paired with the only person who wasn’t born and raised in their underground community, Fade. He was from above ground and ran away when his father was killed as a young child. He’s got an attitude and never made nice with anyone so Deuce isn’t exactly thrilled.

This book is paced nicely and there is never a dull moment, especially when you have Fade and Deuce around each other. It’s a partnership that is first only tolerated because they’re forced to work together. If they don’t work together one of the freaks could kill either (or both) of them. (Oh, if you’re wondering, here’s another thing I love! The half zombie/half human carnivores are called freaks! How awesome is this?)

I can’t really say much more than I already have without spoiling some pretty big plot points but this is a definitely recommendation! The ending is going to make you crave for more but sadly, we must way for the second book, OUTPOST. But I know it’ll be worth the wait. Ann Aguirre mentioned there might be a novella in the meantime to hold us over? I’m crossing my fingers for this…because I can’t wait.

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