Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Enclave (Razorland #1) by Ann Aguirre

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!

This book was really entertaining! 4 Smileys!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Prodigy (Legend #2) by Marie Lu

Let me start off by saying that the Legend series is one of my favorite series of all time. I love it so much and it’s so amazingly awesome. The first book in the series, Legend, was, of course, spectacular, and Lu did not disappoint AT ALL with her second book, Prodigy!

            After June and Day escape from the military center of Los Angeles and narrowly avoid Day’s execution at the expense of his brother’s life, the two flee to Las Vegas in the hopes of meeting up with the Patriots, the rebel group opposing the Republic, and Tess, Day’s childhood friend. Meanwhile, the Elector Primo dies from his long-term illness and his son, Anden, assumes the position of Elector. When they arrive, the Patriots want June and Day to aid in a plot to assassinate the new Elector. June goes undercover and gets close with the new, young Elector and she discovers that he may not be the bad guy that the Patriots make him out to be. Will June and Day be able to kill what may be the Republic’s only hope for change? Or will they stop the plot before it’s too late and find out who the real enemy of the State is? Find out by reading it! Seriously, do it NOW. You won’t regret it, I assure you!

            Once again, Lu has astonished me with her amazing characters. Both June and Day have such depth and there was a lot of character development in this book, considering that it was a sequel. June is still as fierce and determined as ever. Day is kind-hearted and enthusiastic. I love both June and Day because they are so amazing and I wish that I could do half of the stuff that they can do. They can scale buildings like it’s nobody’s business. I want to be able to do that so bad! I mean, they have an otherwise rough life, but the physical feats they are capable is astounding and I wish I cold be as cool of them. Oh, jealousy. (See my Legend review for more reasons why I love June and Day)  As a last note on the characters, let me just mention that Kaede is really awesome. Okay, that is all.

            The story Lu wrote was full of twists and turns and there were a lot of things that happened that I could not guess beforehand. I didn’t even know who the actual evil person was until June figured it out. It’s awesome when the reader figures things out at the same time as the character does because then you get so caught up in the story, and that is how Prodigy was. It was SO AMAZING. Lu also once again did a phenomenal job with the multiple points of view. As it switched back and forth from June to Day, I could tell which character was talking because the two narrations were written so differently. It’s not often that I like books with multiple points of view, but I love this one! The only criticism that I have of the plot is that there was one unnecessary death, but that could just be my grief talking because I’m still not over it. People who have read the book, you know who I mean. So many tears! Also, the ending? The people who haven’t read this book yet, prepare yourselves for that because preparing definitely needs to be done before reading this ending. My heart broke a little and only the next book will be able to heal it. Write quickly, Marie Lu!

With amazing characters, an awesome storyline, and dynamic narrations, Prodigy was probably one of the best sequels I have ever read. I am so looking forward to reading the next book in the series, Champion, but I have to wait until November to read it! The wait shall be painful, but I shall carry on!