Sunday, May 1, 2011

Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Release Date: April 12th, 2011
Source: Publisher
New York City has been decimated by war and plague, and most of civilization has migrated to underground enclaves, where life expectancy is no more than the early 20's. When Deuce turns 15, she takes on her role as a Huntress, and is paired with Fade, a teenage Hunter who lived Topside as a young boy. When she and Fade discover that the neighboring enclave has been decimated by the tunnel monsters—or Freaks—who seem to be growing more organized, the elders refuse to listen to warnings. And when Deuce and Fade are exiled from the enclave, the girl born in darkness must survive in daylight, in the ruins of a city whose population has dwindled to a few dangerous gangs. As the two are guided by Fade’s long-ago memories, they face dangers, and feelings, unlike any they’ve ever known. [from goodreads]
Grim, exhilirating, fantastically creepy and even romantic at times.... Ann Aguirre's Enclave struck all the right cords, making me an instant fan. :)

Deuce was, plainly speaking, a badass. As a huntress, she has to be in order to protect her people--she dedicates all her time to train in order to earn the prestigious title but she also wants the security in knowing that as a huntress, she'll never be pushed around or forced to do menial tasks in order to survive. However, as hard as she tries to exude an indestructible front, at her core she's very much an emotional, compassionate being. Fade, her hunting partner, has a similar personality but the difference between these two is that he lets his emotions loose. He wears them on his face and through his movements; Deuce stores and masks them so that they can't get to the surface. This is the only way she knows how to cope with feelings but Fade changes that. Their becoming partners was the best thing to happen to either of them and once their working relationship crosses into a more romantic territory.... some new possibilities rise up between them. 

But I would be terribly remiss if I said that Enclave was just about the romance between Deuce and Fade; Aguirre's story is first and foremost about Deuce's discovery of a world beyond the Enclave, where she learns that the truths that she held as law are completely shattered...but that there's hope. And with Fade at her side, that hope seems a bit more attainable. But enough about the awesome characters! I have to comment on Aguirre's action-packed scenes. Enclave had some of the best fight scenes I've ever read and reading/watching Deuce and Face fight off Freaks and other dangers down the road was amazing! Very scary and very well-written. Aguirre's narrative is smooth and quick to the point (no flowery descriptions in sight) but there were some moments between characters or from Deuce herself where Aguirre's writing produced some gems; it was great to find them since they felt like diamonds in the rough (just as Deuce is).

Thrilling, action-packed and completely awesome, I had tremendous fun reading Ann Aguirre's young adult debut. Aguirre is a fantastic story teller and since I loved her writing style so much, I even went out and bought Grimspace, one of her adult sci-fi's. Anyways, I completely recommend getting your hands on Enclave. You're missing out if you haven't already!

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