Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Book Review: Enclave
Plot: Deuce lives in an underground community known only as the conclave. After some kind of virus wiped out civilization and left behind "freaks" (their word for monster-zombies) the few survivors eek out an existence far beneath the rest of the world. Deuce receives her name (before she was known only as a number) and because of her physical prowess and fighting skills, becomes a Huntress. It's what she's wanted her whole life. She is paired with Fade, a boy who recently joined the enclave from the outside (which is rare) and who doesn't seem to have or want any friends. He and Deuce are sent on a dangerous mission, the results of which will turn Deuce's world upside down.
Characters: I really liked Deuce's character. She's strong, determined, and doesn't let anything or anyone define her, or tell her what she can't do. Despite that, she's willfully closed her eyes to the problems and possible lies of her society. It creates a wonderful dichotomy which I thoroughly enjoyed.
Fade's character is a bit more cliche. He's the mysterious boy no one knows much about, and it's obvious right away that Deuce will be the one that unlocks him and gets him to open up. Despite the cliche, it actually worked well for the story, and I was intrigued.
World Builidng: He book felt very dystopian, which I liked (being a dystopian fan myself). The characters end up wandering around quite a bit, which is how they explore the parts of the world Deuce has never seen. That said, this aspect was kind of meh for me. I didn't hate it, by any means, and honestly it might be a by-product of the YA problem, which I've ranted about before. The world-building wasn't bad, but it just wasn't terribly detailed or original, either. Being a fan of guys like Robert Jordan (who can't go two pages without mentioned embroidery or the styles/fashions/customs/culture of some group of people), Brandon Sanderson, etc., I just didn't have much umph for this. As is my problem with many YA novels, it was just a bit too bland for me. I need more edge. But, if you're big on YA novels, this probably won't be a problem for you.
Plot/Ending: The action in the beginning of the novel was great. About 2/3-3/4 of the way through, I have to admit the story stalled for me. It picked up again at the end, and I thought it ended on a good note, but like the world-building, it was just a bit blah. Not bad, by any means, but it really didn't blow me away either, which was surprising. I thought I'd love this book. That said, I plan to read book 2. Partly because the story was good enough to keep reading, and left off in such a way that there are endless possibilities for the next installment. And partly because I have book 2 on my shelf. So, I might as well. :D
Writing: Superb. No problems at all there.
Overall: It was no The Walking Dead or The Road, which are my faves because they're a dose of gritty, often tragic reality that I get addicted to. But, some people find them too dark. If you're looking for something a little more tame that still feels very dystopian, with a healthy dose of YA thrown in, this may just be the book for you! Check it out.
Has anyone else read Enclave? What did you think of it?