Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Enclave review

Description: 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 she 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.

My thoughts: I don’t know if I’ve ever said it on the blog, but dystopias are one my one of my favorite types of stories in the YA genre, even back before the Hunger Games fans decided they liked it (no offense).

Enclave is now among my list of good dystopian stories. And unlike my most recent fav. dystopian, Wither, this story isn’t contained to just one main setting, which I enjoyed. For some reason I have a soft spot for good dystopians that include main characters roaming from place to place.

I also liked the friendship/romance aspect between Deuce and Fade. There was just the right amount of romance in the book without it being the main point of the story.

One thing that stood out for me was that although Deuce grew as a person, she didn’t change overnight like so many other female characters. Other heroines in other stories have been portrayed as standoffish and/or hard, like they never get emotionally involved, but 10 pages in they’re already going against their normal characteristics. Thankfully Deuce wasn’t like that, and didn’t change her whole personality style within the first few chapters of Enclave.

Now, although I really liked this book, it seemed to run out of steam near the end of the story. I don’t know how else the author could have sped everything up, so it was understandable that parts were a little dry. But regardless of this, I still really enjoyed Enclave. And because of its ending, I’m really wondering how this could be the 1st book in a series. This could easily be a standalone book so I’m wondering where else Ann Aguirre can go with these characters.


  1. Hi! New follower! Really enjoyed this review. I've seen this book crop up a few times on blogs but I haven't been tempted to go for it yet. Will do now I think. I LOVE dystopias and it sounds like just my type of thing.

    Thanks for the recommendation.

    Amber @ The Spine-Breaker's Club

  2. I love the concept of Freaks being dystopian monsters--a twist on outcasts in school. Of course, the freaks in school are never the true monsters. Anyway, great site!


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