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Archived > Enclave by Ann Aguirre: July 2011

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message 1: by [deleted user] (last edited Jul 02, 2011 10:40PM) (new)

Enclave (Razorland, #1) by Ann Aguirre

And let the discussion commence!

As always, there's SPOILERS in this discussion, so don't read it if you don't wanna know!

Here's some discussion questions (you guys don't have to answer all of them):

-What do you think of Deuce's underground world?
-Did you like Deuce as a character? (strong/weak?)
-What did you think of the three groups? Do you think a society could ever devolve so much as to meet only the basic needs of it's people?
-Did you like the idea behind the Freaks? Were they realistic?
-How did you like Fade? Did you like him as Deuce's love interest? Or did you like Stalker more than Fade?
-How did you feel about the differences between the underground world and the topside world?
-Did you like the ending of the book? Are you glad or annoyed that there's going to be a sequel?


message 2: by Sharni (new)

Sharni (sharnilovesbooks) | 2 comments I just finished Enclave a couple of weeks ago. I do like Deuce's character. She is a strong person and I like that about her. The Freaks where a little... freaky. I love Fade. He's pretty cool. Although, I don't like how he doesn't tell her what he's thinking. Just tell her!!! I did enjoy the underground/topside worlds. They were so different and unique. And I did like the ending. Im looking forward to the sequel. I hope Deuce and Fade's relationship progresses, and I'm still not sure if I like Stalker... It's an ongoing debate I'm having with myself.
Totally enjoyed it!


message 3: by Carey (new)

Carey | 106 comments I thought their Underground world was pretty interesting. I'm really curious about what exactly happened to make the founders of the Enclave think Topside was unlivable. Or were they just shoveling that junk out to keep people in line. You'd think they'd want to help their people more by living somewhere better suited for them. Did they just "feel" safer there??

Duece was an awesome character. I really enjoyed her because she seems like one of the only ones with feeling like we experience now. Warring with what she's been taught, but wanted more and learning that her superiors were lying. Loved how she handled it all.

The Freaks sure are scary to me. If this was a movie I'm not sure I could watch it...just because of them. Its one thing to read it and one to really see it. Yikes...I would NOT want to live in that world if they were there.

I really LOVED Fade!!! And totally agree....spit it out already and TELL HER! But vice-versa as well. Come on Duece...he doesn't know what's going on with you and you should feel comfortable enought to talk to him already. Grrr...

I'm not quite sure about this sequel. The description sounds like it might bug the heck outta me. But, that might be what makes it good as well. I really hope that Duece and Fade get together. They are perfect.

Stalker was very interesting. I think he really is just a survivor. He knew when to get out of a bad situation...I know that sounds bad, he left his Wolves behind...but he really couldn't have done anything for them. Yet, I definitely do not like his attitude toward women...except in Duece's case.

Anyway, this book was so AMAZING and I completely loved it!! Can't wait to hear everyone's thoughts as well.


message 4: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten | 3 comments Whenever I read books like this I judge them based on the information they can provide regarding what happened in the past causing the situation that presently exists in the book. I like when things are left to interpretation, but I prefer there to be more information regarding the cause of the current collapse.

I thought the underground world was very interesting and well thought out and described. I appreciate that men and women were treated the same. I was very disturbed by the elders setting up Deuce's friend to send a message, especially because he was a breeder. I find it very hard to believe that even in a society that favored the strong over the weak that they would put an innocent out in the dangerous wilderness and one who they trained to be weaker than the hunters or builders just because they wanted to send a message. The murder of Banner should have been enough of a message.

I thought Deuce was a great character. She was a very strong character and not only because she could fight but also because she could see her own weaknesses and accept them. Also, she was able to survive a world that was completely contrary to her view growing up. I couldn't imagine suddenly being thrown into a world where everything I thought to be true was the exact opposite.

I can't believe that the groups of people didn't know each other existed. I was really disturbed by the freaks. I really want to know what created them or where they came from. Did they develop underground or topside? Were there two separate groups? Are they Zombies or a different species? Why did the underground people and the society at the end know about them but the city people did not? What kept them out of the cities? These are questions I'd love to have answered.

I loved Fade. He was my favorite character. I don't think the author could have done a better job with him. I want Fade and Deuce to end up together. Stalker isn't emotional enough for me, but Fade is so full of mystery and feeling. Plus, Deuce clearly loved him even if she didn't quite know what that was or why she felt the way she did about Duece.

I think it's amazing that people in the society at the end didn't know that people lived in the cities. I wonder if when whatever happened that required evacuation anyone knew there were still people in the city or if they honestly thought they evacuated everyone. I think someone knew, but didn't want to go back if I'm interpreting the newspaper tidbits we got correctly.

As for a sequel, I'm glad there will be one because I did not like how this book ended. I need closure, but that being said, I would have preferred a longer book and I'm a little annoyed that now I have to read a sequel. Also, I'm afraid this will turn into some sort of a series, and I just wanted one story. If it's a series I'm going to have to keep reading to find out what happens to Fade and Deuce, and I'm frustrated by that! :)

I enjoyed this book. It was a quick read. I'm looking forward to the next one, and I'm hoping the next one will answer all of my questions regarding what happened in the past that led up to this story. This book didn't answer enough of those questions for me, so though I enjoyed the story it really left me wanting more in the end, and not in a good way!


message 5: by Andrew (new)

Andrew | 31 comments This definitely was a quick read and I did enjoy the fast pace set by the author. I agree with pretty much everything that has been said here so far.

Quick answers: Like Deuce, the Freaks were scary, descriptions of the enclave and topside were done well, and Fade > Stalker.

I understand that Deuce was raised with the mindset of being a huntress/protector her entire life with no thought of love or being a breeder so I can see how she may have some issues with feelings or expressing them, but come on Fade! You obviously are in love with her. How much time does anyone in this hostile world have? Stop beating around the bush and just tell her how you feel.

I agree with Kristen on the few annoyances and I was thinking the same thing. How are the Freaks only underground? And it's a pretty big coincidence that they just make it topside at the same time as Deuce and Fade. Also, how is it that no one knows that there are people in the city? The guy that found them was a trader so I assume he is a traveler as well which means there are probably many others like him. News would travel with them.

Oh yeah, and one other annoyance. How come people die in their early twenties in the enclave but above ground there are plenty of older adults. I could understand if it was just hard to live past 25 because of the harsh world with Freaks, but it was basically described that they retire after a certain age. So it seems to me that they are basically dying of old age. Maybe I just missed something.

I am looking forward to the sequel since there are a lot of unanswered questions but I do hope the author doesnt drag it out into a series.

Also, I really would like to know what happened to the enclave after they left. Give us a chapter from the perspective of Silk or one of Deuce's friends. I have to know!


message 6: by Carey (new)

Carey | 106 comments I wonder if they only live to mid-20s because of living underground. Having all of that smoke and no air circulation should cause some problems. And maybe too much inbreeding since it was a small group.

Just some ideas I was wondering about. :)


message 7: by Hope (new)

Hope York (hopeyork) The Enclave would have been a creepy place to live if you ask me. Ann Aguirre painted a pretty gruesome/amazing picture of the place and the people! Ugh... no way I would have made it.

I was skeptical about Deuce in the beginning because she was a little on the brain washed side. I was really happy when she figured out the Elders were misleading every one. She was a very realistic character. She had to be 'brave' to be a huntress but it was her compassion and loyalty that ended up making her a great female lead for me.

The 2 groups of younger people were all about violence and dominance. We didn't get much of the older group but what little we had was the closest to normal as it got. I do feel it was a little much that they didn't know about each other. I think it is definitley possible for society to devolve drastically like that. At some point when surviving is all you have to worry about, meeting basic needs is probably all you can do.


Aaah the Freaks! Are they zombies or just crazy nuclear afflicted people? They would scare the crap outta me either way!

I love Fade! He's a great match for Duece. Stalker on the other hand... not so much.


The ending would work as a stand alone book for me but I'm glad there is going to be more to the story!


message 8: by Amanda (new)

Amanda (amonika) I agree Hope, the Enclave freaked me out. I don't think I would have made it. It is in my nature to question everything, so it freaked me out with the "this is the way it is and you will do it and not ask questions or you will be banished" message.

I also agree that it took me awhile to like Deuce. Again, I think it is because I question everything and she (at first) seemed to just accept it. I ended up really liking after she started realizing that things weren't what they seemed. I found her to be a strong character once she developed her a little bit.

The freaks were weird and a little scary. I can't say whether they were realistic though. The one area that I really struggled with this book is that you have no idea why the freaks are the way they are. They just exist and you have to accept that. I think knowing a bit more of the story (what happened to cause the society they are living in) would have helped this part of the story.

I loved Fade. I also liked Stalker, but I'm solidly on Team Fade in the romance department. I liked how Fade and Deuce complimented each others characters nicely. It drove me insane that they didn't talk or communicate with each other. I spent a lot of the middle to end of the book silently screaming at the characters to TALK TO EACH OTHER. Yes, I resorted to all caps.

The differences between the two worlds were interesting. However, again, i repeat, why are they living the way they do? You know that the rain is dangerous, but you don't know why or what happened to drive some people into the ground and others to fight warfare street gang fights to survive. I didn't understand it and it was hard to merge the worlds and cultures because they were so different and you have no idea what drove the world to that.

I liked the ending and I'm glad there is a sequel. I'm hoping the sequel clears things up because I don't feel like I got enough of the story. I'm also hoping that Fade and Deuce start talking to each other. If this had been a stand alone book, it would have felt incomplete.


message 9: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten | 3 comments Andrew wrote: "This definitely was a quick read and I did enjoy the fast pace set by the author. I agree with pretty much everything that has been said here so far.

Quick answers: Like Deuce, the Freaks were s..."


I was wondering if maybe it had something to do with lack of sun, fresh air, fresh springs, etc. I would like an explanation as well.


message 10: by gina (new)

gina I really enjoyed Enclave! The development of the worlds, both on top and below, was believable. Actually, aspects of the book reminded me of both The Giver and City of Ember, so the world felt familiar.

I totally understand why Deuce was so strongly attached to the ways of her enclave. After all, it’s what she grew up with. The College enclave was structured in a kind of a totalitarian way in order to ensure that everybody’s needs were met. Also I think it was designed to maximize their safety (e.g. only trained hunters go outside of the enclave and risk the perils of “out there”). Of course, good intentions—like providing for all and maximizing safety—can often be broken by corruption, as we see with the distribution of misinformation propagated by the elders. But anyway, Deuce’s reactions to breaking rules made sense to me given her upbringing in a totalitarian society.

The life expectancy of the people down below seemed a little low but made sense if they had poor nutrition, limited opportunities for healthy movement and exercise, and little or no access to sources of vitamin D (the sun!). But I did have trouble picturing an “elder” who was in their 20s.

I loved the concept of the Freaks/Eaters. If you read the author’s note at the end of the book, Ann Aguirre explains that she was basing the concept on the idea of mathematical and scientific models for a zombie attack. Yeah, they’re somewhat easy to kill, but they still manage to invade. The fact that they kept cropping up made perfect sense and gave us a good silent villain. Sure, the gangers are bad, but at least you can try to reason with them. The freaks are worse!

Personally, I’m not usually interested much in the romantic angle of PA stories. However, I’ll weigh in. Fade seems to be a better match for Deuce because he balances out her rough edges. Stalker is too much like Deuce. I liked his character, though. I wondered what he would do in every scene—he was always brought an element of tension.

I was sorry to see no closure on what happened with the College enclave. Maybe something will come up in the next book, but just assuming that everyone was dead didn’t satisfy me.

I do look forward to the next book, but I always worry about second books in the sequel. Please don’t blow it!


message 11: by gina (new)

gina Carey wrote: "I wonder if they only live to mid-20s because of living underground. Having all of that smoke and no air circulation should cause some problems. And maybe too much inbreeding since it was a small..."

I didn't think about the inbreeding issue--that seems right on target to help explain the low life expectancy!


message 12: by Laura (new)

Laura | 70 comments I loved Enclave. I realised afterward that this novel doesn't have a resolved ending as such - the world isn't changed in any way, no romantic decision is made on Deuces part, etc - but I don't think that affected my enjoyment of this at all. I believe the sequel will be good - I hope it will, anyway!


message 13: by Shari (new)

Shari (sharik) | 18 comments -What do you think of Deuce's underground world?

I thought it was claustrophobic ;) yet intriguing. I kept wondering what had those that created the enclaves move underground and what the reasons were for them believing that the topside wasn't safe. I appreciated that for a society so young, they had a semblance of order, albeit it was a dictatorship rather than a democratic order. I also appreciated that men and women were equals in the eyes of society. Only the strong survive.

-Did you like Deuce as a character? (strong/weak?)

I liked Deuce a lot. I always like a lead character that can kick some series butt. I didn't like that she didn't question things and seemed to take everyone at their word. But once she got to understand Fade, I was glad to see she was beginning to wonder if everything she knew was a lie.

-What did you think of the three groups? Do you think a society could ever devolve so much as to meet only the basic needs of it's people?

I think three groups seems rather basic...protect, build and procreate....society can certainly survive to a degree on those three needs. I don't think it's entirely realistic though given that people are only to belong to one "group"... the basic needs of humanity can't be removed by classification.

-Did you like the idea behind the Freaks? Were they realistic?

I wish there was a bit more information about the Freaks.... how they came to be, what caused them to be as they were. I'd be able to give a bit more of a definitive answer if I knew more. I liked the idea that something went terribly wrong and created the mutants but I wanted to know more about the whats and hows.

-How did you like Fade? Did you like him as Deuce's love interest? Or did you like Stalker more than Fade?

I instantly liked Fade. He was clearly a mis-fit with in the society and that intrigued me. His compassionate side came about quickly and I knew he was a good guy, despite the fact that he wasn't accepted. Stalker is an interesting character but I don't see him as Deuce's match. I much prefer the connection between Fade and Deuce.

-How did you feel about the differences between the underground world and the topside world?

I thought the differences were realistic. If society underground never ventured topside, they would have a misconstrued idea of what the world was like above. Topside held a lot more interest for me because I could relate to it, unlike the tunnels. I wonder though why people in the evacuated site never knew that people had been left behind.


-Did you like the ending of the book? Are you glad or annoyed that there's going to be a sequel?

There was a lot left unanswered in the book and a lot more questions brought up with the events at the end. I'm hoping some of that is answered in the next book.


message 14: by Abi (new)

Abi (abigail-but-you-can-call-me-abi) | 5 comments I really liked Enclave, can't wait for sequel..Deuce has to go to school and they wnt her to act like a girl. Ha good luck with that...
Fade's amazing but I don't know what to think of stalker....I mean they kinda just forget that he's a murdering rapist. Hmm but he seems nice.


message 15: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (teoe) -What do you think of Deuce's underground world? It was interesting, and quite popssibly fairly realistic as to what could happen should the Earth actually becom inhabitable due to nuclear war or environmental collapses.

-Did you like Deuce as a character? I thought she was a very realistic character. She followed orders to live, buit still thought for herself. She ios a strong character.

-What did you think of the three groups? Do you think a society could ever devolve so much as to meet only the basic needs of it's people? - I think it would be easy for a society to devolve to only meet the basic need sof its people. Especially if everyone is living in fear.

-Did you like the idea behind the Freaks? Were they realistic? I don't know what the idea behind the Freaks was. I did not find them to be well explained. At first, they seem like zombies and it's possible they were caused by disease. But, then they evolve. I'm not sure what they were, but they do add to the intensity of the book.

-How did you like Fade? Did you like him as Deuce's love interest? Or did you like Stalker more than Fade? I like Fade quite a bit. I also like him as Deuce's love interest. Stalker is interesting, but it's hard to put aside the unessecarily cruel things that he did. Deuce & Fade have likely done some bad things (kill people, Deuce turning a blind eye to the little boy, etc.), but they did not seem to delight in it or go beyond "basics" and need. Stalker, I think, did more than just survive. He encouraged and allowed rape and was overly brutal. Yeah, he did change, but only for survival. I'll be interested to see if he goes back to his old ways and tries to take things over once he feels safe.

-How did you feel about the differences between the underground world and the topside world? Indifferent, I guess. I thin it's to be expected that there'd be differences.

-Did you like the ending of the book? Are you glad or annoyed that there's going to be a sequel? I'm glad there's a sequel. I can deal with the ending since there is a sequel. If there hadn't been a sequel, I would be very dissatisfied.

I am a bit confused at the time table. It seems the author meant for it to have been a long time that the enclave was formed below, but Deuce makes references to coming down below. I know she was born there, but some things she said made it seem like it was more recent than one would assume. I would imagine in order for a society to have formed as it did and be the only things most of them knew, it would've had to have been formed over 50 years ago. But, when talking about Fade, it seemed his dad had been around "before", and that would make him really old when Fade was born.


message 16: by Angie (new)

Angie (angiebayne) I really enjoyed this book up to a point. I loved the underground portions of the book. I was fascinated by the enclave and the society that formed there. I thought Aguirre really spent a lot of time developing the underground and its characters. I loved Duece. I thought she was strong and independent especially once she started thinking for herself. I also really liked Fade. I was intrigued by him from the start and loved the relationship between Duece and Fade. I thought they worked well together. I just wished we would have stayed underground longer because I wanted to know more. I wanted to know more about the Freaks...who they really were (zombies, mutants, what?), how they were getting smarter, etc. I wanted to know more about the rebellion...how it started, what their plans were, etc. But alas that was not to be.

I thought the book started to fall flat once they left the underground. The world above was not nearly as developed and the characters were not nearly as interesting. I was deeply disturbed by the character of Stalker becoming a love interest for Duece. I could understand him joining the group as they traveled since they needed another hunter for protection from the Freaks, but I couldn't believe Aguirre really wanted us to believe Duece would see him as a potential mate instead of Fade. He was a violent ganger who wanted to kill her and he facilitated the gang rape of Tegan. I found his entire character distasteful. I thought it was strange that Duece stated the past should be forgotten and they should move on in regards to Stalker when basically she was saying Tegan should forget she was gang raped and that it was Stalker that let it happen. I don't get how Stalker is at all likeable even if what he did was so he could survive. It is still distasteful and horrible in the extreme. I don't think I could have finished the book if he and Duece ended up together.

As for the ending I really didn't care for it. I thought it was a let down after everything they had went through. The last part of the book felt rushed and incomplete like Aguirre was in a hurry to get to the settlement and didn't want to add all the details in that she needed to. I will read the sequel and hope it pays off though.


message 17: by Jen (new)

Jen (baynej) | 169 comments -What do you think of Deuce's underground world?
I found this world fascinating. I really enjoyed the aspects of the enclave and the way societies formed. I thought this was really well thought out and a great beginning.

-Did you like Deuce as a character? (strong/weak?)
I thought Deuce was great. She was a strong character with weaknesses that she recognized and accepted. I really enjoyed watching her grow and mature. I found it amazing that she was so adaptable to the different surroundings and was so ready to make herself better. Great character development here.

-Did you like the idea behind the Freaks? Were they realistic?
The Freaks were freaky, but very interesting. I would have liked a little more information on them such as who they were, how they became freaks, why the different characteristics between the different groups. Why the underground groups knew about them but not anyone from topside.

-How did you like Fade? Did you like him as Deuce's love interest? Or did you like Stalker more than Fade?
I loved Fade. I found his backstory fascinating, his relationship with Deuce was completely believable to me. I really enjoyed watching the relationship build between the two. I thought Fade and Deuce really made sense. I kind of understood Deuce's relationship with Stalker, but I really don't think that was as believeable as her relationship with Fade. I think Fade and Deuce are a much stronger pair and I'd like to see them together.

-How did you feel about the differences between the underground world and the topside world?
I thought the two worlds were remarkably different, yet kind of similar at the same time. Both had ruling parties and obstacles to watch out for. Both involved journeys for Deuce that made her adapt and adjust to new environments and people. Both were challenging and emotionally draining in different ways. I don't think topside was as developed as the enclave, but I didn't have an issue with it as some others did. I would like to know more about exactly what happened and why everyone thought that topside was hazardous.

-Did you like the ending of the book? Are you glad or annoyed that there's going to be a sequel?
I didn't mind the ending. You kind of had to figure that a settlement had to be around somewhere and if there's a sequel that's where it's going to take place. Aquirre wouldn't have moved Deuce and Fade topside if she wasn't planning on exploring that part of the world. I'll read the sequel.

Overall, I thought this book was good. I highly enjoyed the characters, the world and the story.


message 18: by Bethany (new)

Bethany I loved this book! I really liked Deuce. I think she was very realistic. She's this super tough girl, but she's pretty ignorant and naive because of her upbringing.

I love Fade and I thought they made a lot of sense together. And I think a small part of me died when she kissed Stalker. And, I'm sorry. But who cares if he's being all chummy and helpful. Are you really gonna forget everything he did, Deuce...really? Ugh, hes disgusting and I hope he just goes away! Team Fade!

I'm super excited for the next book. I went into this with low expectaions, but it blew me away. It felt a lot like Hollowland to me. Anyway, it was great, loved it, can't wIt for Outpost!


message 19: by Andrea (last edited Oct 09, 2011 10:13PM) (new)

Andrea | 29 comments For some reason I was also not expecting a lot from this one and was so pleasantly surprised! I really loved the world-building; I can see the creepy tunnels and the Enclave very clearly in my head. And Deuce was an awesome warrior! I definitely have fantasies of being Deuce. :)

I liked that the Enclave leaders weren’t all simply pure evil but were misguided in their search for order and self-preservation. It was more believable and complex that way. And I loved the way everyone got their names and how it came to mean something about them.

Fade and Deuce were a great couple – both very strong but with complementary strengths that made them need each other and made them a great team. I got really worked up over the romance. I was screaming at Fade in my head: “You need to spell it out to her how you feel! Don’t let Stalker win!!” But I did love what he told her in the wagon when she was semi-conscious. Ahh! Impatient for more.


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