Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Welcome to the future - a future that could be just around the corner, or decades away.  In this future world Girl15 is about to become an adult, and during her naming ceremony she becomes Deuce and joins the ranks of the hunters who find the food that feeds her people and defends the enclave from the Freaks that patrol the tunnels eating anything and anyone they can bring down.  It is a world of strictly enforced rules and harsh penalties, where those who defy the elders are exiled from the enclave to wander for the rest of their (very short) lives in the wild areas beyond the safety of the barricades.  As a huntress Deuce is paired with Fade, an outsider who has been accepted into the enclave for the skills that he brings, but who has never been accepted as a true part of their society.  On their first real trip beyond the barricades of their enclave Deuce makes a discovery that will change her life forever.

Deuce has always followed the rules without question - when you die before you turn 30 life is very short, and you don't have time to fight for change.  In a short space of time Deuce realises that if she is to survive she must start making her own decisions, and choose the way she wants to live her life.  With Fade by her side she embarks on a journey that will change her life forever, opening doors to new possibilities that she never dreamed existed, and introduce her to new dangers and new threats.  How safe can her world and her future be when the Freaks are becoming smarter, more organised, and more dangerous - and the elders who are supposed to be protecting them think they are crazy.

This was a fast-paced read that appealed because it was a fresh take on the whole zombie/dystpia theme that has been in several novels over the past few years.  Ann Aguirre is an engaging author who has written a solid and thoroughly enjoyable read - the only complaint being that the ending felt a little rushed, like she was trying to stay under a word limit and chose to end somewhat abruptly rather than trim words from somewhere else.  Deuce is a great main character ad lacks the whiny edge that some of the heroines/heroes have had in other similar novels, you want to stand with her rather than slap her across the back of the head and tell her to get over herself.  A thoroughly enjoyable read and hopefully Aguirre will write more books for teenagers - particularly ones as well researched as this was.

If you like this book then try:
  • Rot and ruin by Jonathan Maberry
  • The hunger games by Suzanne Collins
  • The enemy by Charlie Higson
  • The Marbury lens by Andre Smith
  • The crossing by Mandy Hager

Reviewed by Brilla

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