Wendy Darling's Reviews > Enclave

Enclave by Ann Aguirre
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Okay, I'm adding this note because I'm seeing some activity on this review as I'm updating my reading progress in the third book.

I need to reread this one at some point, because reading the sequel Outpost completely changed my perspective on certain issues. My mini reaction to that book is here: http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...

But for now, my initial reaction to the first book remains below. It's fascinating to see this society that the author created.

2.5 stars I really wanted to like this book, but holy moly. I try very hard not to let my opinion be colored when fictional characters make choices I wouldn't necessarily make, but...I just can't do that in this case. The offhand way gang rape is handled, the dismissive attitude towards an abuse victim, and the sudden introduction of an inconceivable love interest (turning it into a triangle) late in the book left me cold. The action scenes and interesting premise aren't nearly enough to make up for a heroine who is physically extremely capable, but unfortunately, someone who also seems to be emotionally empty.
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Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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Pricky Sorry you didn't like it. I do have to say that the "underground" scenes (in the 'bathrooms', sewer...) left me kinda gross...EEEEWWWWW....yuck.

Wendy Darling It's so weird, Pricky, because I actually did like the way she was telling the story and the world we were in--I just had such a hard time getting past the reality of what was happening. I know that in the time and place it was accepted as "normal," but I'm pedestrian enough that I want to like my heroine more, I guess. I'm curious where the story will go, though, so I think I might still read the next one to see what happens.

Maggie I get what you're saying, but you have to keep this in mind... they were born into a world very different than our own. Stalker and his gang are children who are trying to act like the adults that raised them. I didn't like the rape being considered so nonchalant, but to them, it was part of the way their community worked and processed. I don't like how he's suddenly a love interest though, I think that's pushing the bizarre gimmick she has going for her. But I agree with you...definitely odd.

Wendy Darling I guess I'd have to say I get what you're saying too, Maggie. I get that this is a different world and characters raised in those circumstances have a different perception of what's right.

But I bring my own set of values and history to my reading experience, too, and unfortunately I just wasn't able to get past or be comfortable with the attitudes that were portrayed here. It's like when you read about violence against women or reprehensible human rights violations in other countries and cultures--it may be what those societies are conditioned into being used to, but it's not something I personally want to accept as the norm.

I am still curious enough about the story to see where it goes next, though. And I will definitely give the author's other adult series a try as well.

Maggie She's posted the first two chapters of the second one on her website, and it's kind of strange. Stalker is closer to her and there is less of fade, so I hope that changes! I totally agree though, I did like that she put in a lot of pro-women's rights into her writing, deuce being such a strong woman and all. I want to read some of her others as well!

message 6: by Tammy (new)

Tammy I was about to add this to my TBR pile, but when you mentioned the dismissive and offhand way serious subjects like rape and abuse are handled, well, consider my mind changed. Under normal circumstances I'd definitely add it, but I can't condone dismissive attitudes about something that's already not taken seriously enough in many parts of the world. I get that it may be part of the world, but in my line of work, we feature too many stories about rape and the perpetrators who get away with it. But maybe I'm just being judgmental? I don't mean to be.

Wendy Darling Maggie, Tammy, I just read the second book this weekend and just started on #3, and I have to say that I feel completely different about this series now. And I actually have a great deal of respect for the choices she made in this first book, which are pretty gutsy.

I don't think anyone who disliked it made a mistake, because clearly there was something wanting for some of us in what was portrayed here, but I have a much better understanding and sympathy for Deuce and Stalker and this society after reading book two. I need to go back and reread this again at some point to see if anything changes about how I feel about it.

William (aspiring author) It looks like a good book. Thinking I might give it a try but I'm kind of undecided.

Marissa Chang @william
Its really really good. Especially if you make it to the third book. On the subject of what is happening with the rape and abuse aspect of the story to be honest i never really judged it that harshly, this is not however because i am insensitive and ignorant as to how henuose these crimes are But because i understand that in a crumbling, primal, and savage destopia, basic evils will most definetly run rampet. Its hard NOT to imagine women being objectified as "Breeders" or an object of lust as they are often throughout history. Just because Duece was not affected to much by what happened to her companion, a girl she barley new in the ruins who threatened to tell on Duece if she did not take her with her out of the gangs clutches, it seems perfectly normal to not quite understand what exactly Tegan suffered and sympotgize. The world Duece grew up in and her own hardened personality (thank you Silk) steeled her for worse then those details mentioned. It was a norm for her that there were conciquences for "those types of actions" taken by the Elders in her Enclave because they respected their women to an extent but make no mistake she was ignorant or unaware of what Tegan suffered because she mentioned similar incidents happening ocasionaly in the Enclave. Thats just my opinion. Yes she didnt sympathize with Tegan, tear up, comfort, or empathize with the girl but if she had she would have hated herself for being a weak Huntress and if she had been "soft" she would have been a Breeder who was expected to handle anything emotional unlike the Hunters who were expected, drilled, and taught to be the exact oposite. Basically peices of flesh that could fight against the freaks. This first book Enclave isnt a book about morals, the fact Duece and the author were realists about what females would be in the future should the world fall to hell made me HAPPY. There can be no illusion that though there are strong women people will look towards the men who are more physicaly cabable for protection. This shouldnt be a book to battle about morals or sexes but something to be throughly ENJOYED because of how practically it is laid out. Read the second book Outbreak and the third book Horde before making any final decissions because by the time you reach that third book you'll be "Freaking" out (lol) that there arent more books with Duece! I finished the Razorblade series in under a week. Devored them whole because of how much i loved a strong heroine rather then someone always torn with love or morals or something to emotional that kept from how amazing the plot was! Didnt mean to go on a rant but i LOVE these books and i recomend them for anyone my age (young adult basically) because there are lessons to take from this book. Plus its frickin fantastic!!!!

Marissa Chang P.S: just a reminder but Duece had to fight all her life not to be labled a "Breeder" she fights for the females not so much with her mind or words but with her actions. <3
Love ya! Dueces!!!! <333

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