13 March 2012

(ARC) YA Book Review: Partials by Dan Wells

Release Date: 28 February 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Get a copy! Amazon | B&N

Goodreads description:
The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the population. Reduced to tens of thousands by RM, a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island while the Partials have mysteriously retreated. The threat of the Partials is still imminent, but worse, no baby has been born immune to RM in more than a decade. Our time is running out.

Kira, a sixteen-year-old medic in training, is on the front lines of this battle, seeing RM ravage the community while mandatory pregnancy laws threaten to launch what’s left of humanity into civil war, and she’s not content to stand by and watch. But as she makes a desperate decision to save the last of her race, she will discover that the survival of humans and Partials alike rests in her attempts to uncover the connections between them—connections that humanity has forgotten, or perhaps never even knew were there.
My Thoughts...

While Partials started out a bit on the slow side (for me), I became addicted to the world and the characters and flew through the second two-thirds of the book.  Dan Wells has crafted a wonderfully descriptive novel that throws the reader into a futuristic society that will both scare and awe.
Each life has a different purpose, and some peopel can find their purpose more easily than others. The key, ...the most important thing you can eve know, is that whatever your purpose is, that's not your only choice. ... No matter why you're here, you're never tied down to fate. You're never locked in. You make your own choices, Kira, and you can't let anyone ever take that away from you.
-p66, eARC
I have to start with our main character, Kira, because I developed a pretty deep bond with her throughout the novel.  She's the type of heroine that I love to see.  She's willing to stick her neck out for the things that she believes in and she's not willing to cave to outside pressures.  She's very much her own person.  And yet she has a deep connection with the people around her that I totally appreciated.  She's willing to stick her neck out for them when she needs to, but she's not willing to let the stop her from reaching for her ultimate goals/dreams. Her hope and perseverance made her somewhat of an enigma in her society and really made her stand out.
Happiness is the most natural thing in the world when you have it, and the slowest, strangest, most impossible thing when you don't. ... It's like learning a foreign language: You can think about the words all you want, but you'll never be able to speak it until you suck up your courage and say them out loud.
-p66, eARC
The storyline itself, as I said, starts a bit slow, but when it really starts to get going, you won't be able to put the book down.  Wells has written a book that explodes with tension and action.  There are some moments where potentially I felt there was a tad too much "discussing what we're going to do and then here is how we did it" (does that makes sense?), but overall, I found that once the world was established at the beginning, the process of discovery smoothed out and the story started flowing. I appreciated as well that Wells seems to give his audience's intelligence some credit in his use of military and medical jargon.  He doesn't shy away from complicated terminology and descriptions.
War, see, is when two sides fight, maybe not evenly, but at least they both get a few swings in.  What we call the Partial War was manking gettin' mugged in an alley.
-p47, eARC
Overall, Partials is a true dystopia for the science fiction fan who loves detailed description and strong scientific investigations. Wells' world will really suck you in and if you're anything like me, you'll be begging for the sequel as soon as you turn the last page.  There's a little romance in the story, but it always takes a back seat to the stories bigger struggles and issues.


Bethdaw said...

This one is on the TBR, sounds pretty awesome! Love the review!

Beth ^_^

Giselleco said...

Great review Jessi I really enjoyed this one and I agree Kira is an excellent protagonist! I also never found it that dragging in the start as everyone mentions. I was really into it though.

Molli @ Once Upon a Prologue said...

I totally agree with your review, Jessi!  It was a little slow at first but it turned out to be a GREAT sci-fi read, a bit twisty and unpredictable, and didn't fall into many of the YA tropes that are out there in way too many books.   I'm really looking forward to the sequel, mainly because of how awesome Kira is! 

Molli | Once Upon a Prologue

elena said...

Yours is not the first review that commented on Partials' slow beginning! It's something I will keep in mind once I read the book. Kira sounds like a fantastic heroine, I like that she's her own person. I'm excited to read this book! Great review. :) 

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