Sunday, July 31, 2011
YA Sci-Fi: Enclave by Ann Aguirre
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Date: April 2011
Acquired: won in a Holt InGroup giveaway
Read: for my own enjoyment; I love dystopias
Reading time: two days
Deuce has just been initiated as one of her underground enclave's Huntresses. Paired off with the enigmatic outsider Fade, she's responsible for helping to both hunt for meat and protect the enclave from the zombie-like Freaks that infest the tunnels. But Deuce and Fade manage to get on the Hunters' leader's bad side, and they get stuck with poor missions that end up showing them that the enclave is not always right in its rules, teachings, and actions. When the duo is eventually thrust out from their community, will they be able to survive in the abandoned, post-apocalyptic world up above?
Enclave is a great action/adventure dystopia the like of Blood Red Road and The Hunger Games. The plot moves fast, there's a lot of exciting fight scenes, and the main character is a strong warrior girl who, of course, gets entangled in some sort of romance with the ubiquitous male companion. Nice read, yes. Will it really stick with me past my initial reading of it? Not much. I love dystopias and post-apocalyptic novels for the societal commentary they often carry, but this one has little past a "rules are not always right" message in the first part. (Is anyone else reminded of the individualistic Anthem by Ayn Rand?) A great read in terms of exciting action, but without much substance. Enjoyable, but not that memorable.
Not a dis on Enclave, which has zombies, but I do not understand why authors put zombies in dystopian novels. Who came up with that? What would turn people into zombies after some kind of apocalypse? (Aguirre does not explain this in Enclave, at least not in the first book.) Maybe I like hard sci-fi too much, preferring scenarios more realistic than (usually) mindless, humanoid, flesh-eating monsters.