This is my second time reading Enclave by Ann Aguirre and I have to say that I didn’t enjoy it as much the second time through as I did the first. I read it for the first time over two years ago, so I had not been exposed to as many books as I have now. That being said, I still really enjoyed it, just not as much as the first time.
Deuce lives in an underground society and the tunnels of the New York City subway are all that she has ever known. The world above them is fraught with danger where the rain burns your skin clean off your body. Or at least that’s what she’s always been told by her enclave’s elders. Deuce has spent her entire life preparing to become a Huntress, one who hunts for food and fights Freaks, mindless monsters that ramble through the tunnels. But then, she gets stuck with Fade as her partner, a boy with a mysterious origin that appeared at the enclave out of the blue. As the two grow closer, Fade shows Deuce all of the corruption that exists in the enclave’s governing body. When they are wrongly accused and exiled for a crime that they did not commit, Deuce and Fade must escape to the surface. There, they find that it is livable, but gangs and Freaks run rampant through the streets. The two then attempt to find the safe haven that Fade’s father always talked about and they are joined by more “friends” on their journey. Will the pair successfully make it to the place of their dreams? Or will they get overrun by Freaks and gangbangers before they can glimpse their paradise?
Deuce is a hard, determined person. She’s a strong female protagonist, there’s no doubt about that. In the beginning of the story, I thought she was just a little too obsessed with becoming a Huntress. I think the word “Huntress” may appear over 100 times in the first two chapters, I kid you not. Also, Deuce has this “Huntress voice” in her head that tells her what to do to survive, but it only ever tells her to do awful things, like killing her best friend or leaving a poor, defenseless child alone in the Freak-infested tunnels. Sometimes, I just wanted to smack the Huntress voice and tell it to just shut up because there is really no need to kill your best friend, okay? Even though I just spent that whole time bashing Deuce, I didn’t really think she was that bad of a character. She was strong and independent. She cared about others, but didn’t know how to express it. Overall, a good character with some annoying qualities, but not so annoying that I disliked her.
Fade, on the other hand, is amazing. He may be a Hunter, but he doesn’t only do what he needs to survive. He cares about other people and puts others before himself. He’s one of those people that are hard to warm up to, but then are amazing friends once they like you and his compassion and strength are apparent in every action he performs. If you can’t tell, I think Fade is wonderful. Enough said. J
The story line was interesting and it kept me engaged from beginning to end. It was an interesting idea to have people living below the ground and people living above the ground, yet they know nothing about each other. The writing was an interesting style. Because Deuce was not exactly a scholar, I can understand why the narration is a bit choppy and most of the times it made sense, but then there were other times when it just… didn’t. Good thing they were few and far between! The writing was not too flowery, which matched the action-packed story line perfectly. Overall, Enclave was a good read, but it didn’t exactly blow me out of the water. Next I shall read the sequel, Outpost, so look out for that review in the next couple of days!