Welcome to the future. A future where the society lives underground. A future where you are raised to become either a Breeder, Builder or Hunter. Welcome to the Enclave imagineered by Ann Aguirre.
This book both surprised and intrigued me despite it's original lack of notability. Aguirre does an amazing job creating and weaving the wonderfully diverse characters together and laying out the beautifully and horrifying settings. This is one YA dystopian that is not all gloom and doom and also does not focus on the romance (there is a little, but it's not the main plot) and for once there is no love triangle...whew! I love me a good love triangle, but lately it feels overdone.
Now, onto the plot. Imagine a time where someone who is 25 years is old. The times are dire and dangerous and individuals are only granted a name if they can survive to the age of 15. Enter our main character, Girl15 who has been training to become a Hunter and is now known as Deuce, an official Hunter that will navigate the tunnels filled with "freaks" who are zombie-ish without being totally spelled out as zombies, and bring back food for the other Breeders, Builders and Elders. She is finally doing what she loves only to find she is paired with outcast Fade who is quite, strange and the only one in their Enclave from the outside (he, of course is also irresponsible and irresistible). As Deuce gets to know Fade she learns to trust him and also learns that all is not as she has been raised to believe. Fade and Deuce discover that changes are happening and that the thoughtless "freaks" are developing more intelligence and strategy to hunt and try to warn the Enclave but the Elders refuse to see and accept this and the two of them are exiled and forced outside the Enclave and head "topside," only to discover that the "freaks" are the least of their worries.
This is a great read and yes, it too is a series so there is more to read if you so desire! It is elegantly written and I love when characters develop and expand their views right in front of you. They're eyes are opened to possibility. This book really takes you on and adventure and I'd have to say that if I have any critique it's that the name Deuce was entirely hard for me to embrace but only because I always seem to want to laugh like a 10 year old boy when I read it because yes, Deuce, in my mind, is another word for "poo."