When I first read Enclave, I was fascinated by the grim, often violent post-apocalyptic setting as well as the Freaks that were an ever-present danger. Deuce is a fierce Huntress whose sole purpose is to provide for her people–but some of the attitudes of her society bothered me greatly, and it wasn’t until I read its sequel that I better understood the world she lived in.
With the final book Horde, I came to fully appreciate the boldness of the choices the author made in starting her story where she did, as well as the themes of honor and sacrifice within a brutal and unforgiving war. I also loved the extraordinary tenderness that blossoms between Deuce and Fade, which is tested by terrible circumstances, as well as by Stalker–a hated figure in the first book who evolved into a complicated character who fully comprehends the mistakes he has made.
As part of the official Horde Blog Tour, we’re pleased to welcome USA Today bestselling author Ann Aguirre to the blog today to talk about the tangled relationships between her complex and unforgettable trio. Please join us in welcoming her to The Midnight Garden!
Readers say this occasionally about the Razorland series. “Why did she have to include a stupid love triangle? That ruins everything!”
First, here’s a definition I found on Wikipedia: “Two main forms of love triangle have been distinguished: ‘there is the rivalrous triangle, where the lover is competing with a rival for the love of the beloved, and the split-object triangle, where a lover has split their attention between two love objects’.”
Today, I’m taking that opportunity to rebut. In my view, a love triangle only exists if the conditions are fulfilled as above. If Stalker and Fade had been in true competition for Deuce’s affections, then yes, there’s a rivalrous love triangle in the series. Likewise, if Deuce had ever been really conflicted about who she loved, then the latter would be true. But in the beginning, Deuce had the emotional awareness of a rock. It took her forever to realize she was feeling… something for Fade, even longer to figure out how to have a relationship with him. Down below, emotions were not encouraged; there was no nurturing. There was nobody to talk about her feelings with or whisper about her crushes. Instead, there was work to do, pretty much all the time. Then she comes to Salvation, where things are different.
By this point, Stalker has gotten the wrong idea about her (and how she feels about him), but she’s fairly oblivious to the nuances. When she finally understands the conflict, she’s created, she feels horrible, but there is never any doubt in her mind about who she wants to be with. And while Stalker tries to change her mind, she doesn’t waver. She sees his as a friend and she accepts comfort from him, but there’s no deviation in her devotion to Fade. Ever.
That being true, I’d say there’s more of a love T in the Razorland series. If you refer to the above flow chart, you can see that the sides of awareness are not closed, leading to a T instead of a triangle. While the word triangle starts with the letter T, the symbol itself is not a triangle. Deuce and Fade are on a line, looking back and forth at each other. Stalker is off to the side, looking at Deuce (but not Fade) yet she’s not looking back at him, except in friendship. I hope I’ve clarified my opinions on what constitutes a love triangle. I’ve written them before, though not often. I just don’t think the Razorland series is one of those times.
Feel free to agree or disagree in comments!
Thanks to our friends at Macmillan Teen, our readers have the chance to win paperback copies of the Enclave and Outpost, as well as a hardback copy of Horde, which will be out on October 29th, 2013.
All you need to do is leave a comment below telling us whether you agree or disagree with the author’s position that there is no real love triangle between Deuce, Fade, and Stalker–or you can just tell us why you’re excited to win this series! Don’t forget to fill out the Rafflecopter form, too.
Open to US and Canadian residents aged 18 and older, or 13 and older with parental permission. Good luck!