Wednesday, January 09, 2013

REVIEW: Enclave by Ann Aguirre

My Rating: 10 out of 10 stars

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.

Wow, this was a fantastic read! Enclave is the first book in the Razorland trilogy, a new Young Adult dystopian series by Ann Aguirre. (Actually it was published in April 2011 so it's not really that new.) I devoured this book in only 5 days, having a hard time putting it down. It was only about 272 pages though so I'm sure there's many that could read that in a single day. ;) Though it's only January, I have a feeling this one will wind up at or very near the top of my best reads of 2013.

So what makes this novel stand out among the plethora of others like it? Yes, the whole dystopian theme has been getting an extraordinary amount of attention, some even claim it's being overdone, but you can't deny the success of books like The Hunger Games or TV series like The Walking Dead. And IMO, this stuff is a whole lot more interesting than the snooze fest that is Fifty Shades of Grey. :P
The author has taken several chilling themes—zombies, war, plague, underground societies—and given them a different spin so the story is fresh and new. And thankfully, no "love triangle"!

I'd highly recommend this series to fans of the above mentioned books and shows, and I'm looking forward to reading Outpost, the next book the series, which fortunately I already have here and waiting thanks to a thoughtful holiday gift from PaperBackSwap. :)