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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Audio Review: Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Posted by Irish in Review1 Comment

Title: Enclave (Goodreads)
Publisher: Macmillan Audio (Audio); Feiwel & Friends (Print)

Source: Purchased
Publication Date: 12 April 2011 (Audio & Print)
Series or Standalone: Series
ISBN: 1427211205 (Audio), 0312650086 (Hardcover)
Format: Audio
Audio Length:  ~8 hrs
Narrator: Emily Bauer


Place(s) Traveled to: College Enclave // Nassau Enclave // The Tunnels // Gotham/Ruins // Sanctuary

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

First Line: I was born during the second holocaust.

Razorland Series Order

Book 1: Enclave

Book 1.5: Endurance (novella)
Book 2: Outpost
Book 3: Horde (~2013)

Enclave by Ann Aguirre was a book that I had heard about but wasn’t sure that I wanted to read until recently when it seemed to pop up on various blogs that I read. I became curious about it and so used one of my audible credits to download the audio. I was glad that I did and I do have to admit that I am not sure if I’d have enjoyed this one as much if I hadn’t listed to it. The narrator, Emily Bauer, does a fabulous job bring the complex nature of Deuce to life. For Deuce is both very mature for her age but also very naive.

Enclave is a fast-paced story that really sucks a read in. I loved the post-apocalyptic world that Aguirre created and I also loved that there was also an explanation for it. All too often, we as readers, are just supposed to accept that the world we know ended and fell to ruins but are never told why. Now while Aguirre doesn’t go into long details there is enough mentioned that there isn’t any blind acceptance and its a believable one as well. Deuce’s world isn’t pretty its dark and controlled and there is the constant danger of being attacked by a freak. Freaks are zombie-like creatures that live only to eat the flesh off of those few humans that live in the tunnels that make up Deuce’s home. 

When Deuce’s world is shifted and she finds herself leaving the enclave that she’s called home life becomes very uncertain. But Deuce isn’t alone, her partner and friend Fade leaves with her with his stories of life on the surface. A world that Deuce was always told meant certain death. There then comes many tense moments where the reader is left on the edge of their seat wondering if Deuce and Fade will survive to the end of the book. There are battles and discoveries and lots of personal growth for both Deuce and Fade. I loved their relationship and I loved that it wasn’t a romantic one. Yes there was an attraction between them but neither character sat and made mooney eyes at the other.

There was no insta-love and no long, obsessive inner monologues from Deuce whining over how her love is not returned and she’s not good enough and ZOMG does that wink mean he likes me? No, this book was more about Deuce and Fade learning to trust each other more than they’ve had to in the past and really building on their friendship. It was refreshing to “read” a book that wasn’t romantic-centric. 

As I mentioned above, Enclave on audio was a truly excellent performance. Emily Bauer does a fabulous job of bringing Deuce to life her toughness as well as all of her uncertainties. She brings just the right amount of tension to the story where tension is needed. She does a great job with differing voices and I never doubted who was speaking when. Her narration of the description portions of the story were also well done. Bauer is a narrator that I will be on the look out for because hers is a style that I really enjoyed. As with several of the audios that I’ve listened to and fallen in love with it makes me wonder on if I’d have enjoyed this one if I’d read it in print. Overall, this was an excellent read and I its one that I’d highly recommend to all. Especially those that love a good post-apocalyptic dystopian stories with a zombie-eske twist. 

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