Friday, June 22, 2012

Review: Partials by Dan Wells

Author: Dan Wells
Release Date: Out now!
Publisher: HarperCollins
Add or Buy: GoodreadsBooktopia | The Nile
Humanity is all but extinguished after a war with partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the world’s population. Reduced to only tens of thousands by a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island. The threat of the partials is still imminent, but, worse, no baby has been born immune to the disease in over a decade. Humanity’s time is running out.

When sixteen-year-old Kira learns of her best friend’s pregnancy, she’s determined to find a solution. Then one rash decision forces Kira to flee her community with the unlikeliest of allies. As she tries desperately to save what is left of her race, she discovers that the survival of both humans and partials rests in her attempts to answer questions of the war’s origin that she never knew to ask.

Combining the fast-paced action of The Hunger Games with the provocative themes of Battlestar Galactica, Partials is a pulse-pounding journey into a world where the very concept of what it means to be human is in question—one where our sense of humanity is both our greatest liability, and our only hope for survival.

You know those books that you read a quarter of the way through and you just want to jump online and gush about it? And by the end, you're busting with excitement because that was one HELL OF A RIDE and you want everyone to know about it? Yeah, Partials is that book. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, years after the Partials (genetically engineered humans) declared war on their human creators and unleashed a deadly virus into the world. The RM Virus decimated a shockingly large percentage of people and now, 11 years on, humanity is becoming extinct. Every woman is required by law to get pregnant once she turns 18, but no matter how many girls become impregnated, every new baby dies within 3 days of birth.

16 year old Kira works as an intern in the maternity ward, but she struggles with the death and grief she witnesses there, day after day. When her best friend becomes pregnant, Kira can't... she won't allow for the baby to die, so vows to do whatever it takes to find a cure. Even if it means risking her life. Even if it means doing something that could incite a new war. Kira is right up there with some of my favourite heroines. She's got courage, spirit and a beautiful kindness, but stubborn as a mule (something I can relate to!). She is a poster child for standing up for what you believe in. Even when the risks are paramount and she admits fear to herself, she still doesn't back down. I loved how she defied authority, because it's never for stupid or petty reasons, but always for selfless or noble goals. Sure, one could say some of her actions are reckless. Me? I'm raising my fist to the air and cheering her on!

The friendships and banter were so entertaining! You will grow to love many of the secondary characters just as much as you do Kira. I was especially fascinated by Samm, who we meet later in the novel. I can't say much about him, because everything I want to say is a spoiler, but he kept me glued to the pages, eager to discover more of his story or get a glimpse of what really hid behind his poker face. As much as I love romance, I am SO happy it didn't overshadow the plot in Partials. And it was a refreshing change that Kira was already in a relationship. It's sweet and endearing, but certainly not without it's many troubles, which I found made it all the more realistic to read. Plus, I adore Marcus!

I love how Dan Wells can twist your entire perception so easily. He creates a setup, feeds you information from one perspective so that you can't help but form an opinion and then.... he shatters it. Again. And again. I love how he showed that you shouldn't take things at face-value. Not everything or everyone can be categorised as 'good' or 'evil'. And especially the question of humanity plays a key role. Dan forces you to acknowledge the motivations behind everyone's actions, to the point where you're often conflicted by how you should feel. You don't like what they're doing, but you can appreciate where they're coming from. And that takes talented writing to bring across. Nobody likes to sympathise with what they oppose.

Partials is SUCH an engaging novel. This futuristic world is well explored and feels believable, with a ton of adrenaline-pumping action and twists I didn't see coming. Yet there is still clearly potential for even more in the coming novels. There's a balanced mix of science, history, medicine, strategy and some good ol' ass-kicking. Not to mention the emotional and political issues, all of which make this such a perfect read for both guys and girls. Partials offers a story that entertains just as much as it forces you to think. It's a thrilling standout of 2012, and the end clearly sets things up for the next chapter in Kira's journey... which I am freaking excited to embark upon!

 4.5/5 Golden Apples!

26 comments:

  1. Dear Brodie,

    Your blog is becoming more and more hazardous for me to read. You see, every time I see one of your new reviews, I have this overwhelming urge to run out and buy a new book. STAT. But unfortunately, Natalie's book budget and her wishlist do not exactly match up. Which makes Natalie very sad and apparently results in her talking about herself in the third person.

    Sincerely,

    I Should Stop Reading Your Blog but Hey, We Both Know I Won't :)

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    1. Hahaha Brodie enjoys the art of you-want-this-book-but-you-can't-afford-it torture and encouraging book budgets to flow well over their limits. She also likes Natalie talking in third person, it's infectious :P

      Brodie also thinks Natalie rocks <3

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    2. Lol. :D Natalie thinks Brodie rocks too. **Hugs!**

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  2. ^ haha, cute. Great review! I really enjoyed this book too. Also, love the blog design:)

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  3. Oh, I've heard so many things about this book! I'm really happy to hear you enjoyed it, Brodie! The books that make me want to gush online within the first quarter are rare, so if this book was one of those for you, I think I should check it out soon! The concept sounds really interesting and your review makes me want to rush to a bookstore and buy it asap! Wonderful review, Brodie! :)

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  4. Yay, I knew you were going to love this!!:D (No seriously, I'm pretty sure I said "you're gonna love it" on your owl post when you got it:P) So how excited are you now for the sequel?:)

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  5. BRODIE! I loved this book. It might've started out a little slow but I was just so into it anyway. Loved Kira as a character, even though she was such a little risk taker, and Samm killed me. I love him. *melts* HEEHEE! I thought the amount of romance in the book was perfect! And the twists. My goodness. DAN, I love you too! <3 Great review. Totally agree with everything ;) Very excited for the sequel!!

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  6. Eeeaaaai! You have me so excited for this! I remember reading about it a couple of months ago and then I just...forgot all about it. I LOVE books that have a good focus on friendship and Kira sounds like just the kind of MC that I want to read about!

    Awesome review, hun!

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  7. You mess up my reading schedule all the time! *shakes fist* Seriously though, AMAZING review. I want to jump straight into this book now! Can you believe it's been sitting on my shelf for months now, collecting dust? There must be something wrong with me. :P

    This sounds very fulfilling! I love the sound of the world and can't wait to meet some of these characters. I'm so glad you loved it, Brodie!

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  8. Yay, someone who enjoyed this book! All I've seen from this book is mixed review and it's put me off reading it. Your review makes me want to read it now so thank you!! PS GREAT REVIEW!

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  9. I wasn't going to read this book but looks like I might have to. Great review!

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  10. Woo, this one sounds awesome! I'll definitely have to check it out. Thanks for the review :)

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  11. NEEED TO READ NEED TO READ <33 and oh my goodness where I have I been?! Look at your gorgeous new header and design. I miss you and <3 you LOTS

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  12. Awesome review, Brodie! I am so excited to read this book, it sounds amazing! Though I suppose I really should get on to Wells' I Am Not a Serial Killer series first, considering I have all the books, lol. But oooh, this is going to be good, I can feel it! Thanks for the review, Brodie!

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  13. Brodie, you have to stop this. Really. Every glowing review you write makes me want to empty my bank account on these amazing sounding books! Stop being so damn convincing! :P Partials was one of the books I said I wouldn't read for a while, but now... I feel like I have to read it. I mean, courageous heroine, genetically engineered humans, funny banter - ahhh! I need it! :P Awesome review :).

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  14. Awesome review, Brodie! I am so excited to read this book/ when i get it/ soon/hopefully?!

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  15. I'm so glad you loved this one! It's great to read a amazing review about it- now I want it even more!
    Romi.x

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  16. I actually requested an e-galley from NetGalley of Partials but never got the chance to finish it! The premise actually sounds really interesting and you definitely convinced me that I need to read this book!

    Awesome review, Brodie! ♥ Glad you enjoyed it!

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  17. Oh my gosh, your review blew me away! Definitely one of the best out there for this book!!! Vivi's rushing over to Goodreads to add to TBR list RIGHT now! It really does sound like an epic read! Thanks for sharing your excitement ^^

    Vivian (back from hiatus) @ Vivaciously, Vivian

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  18. Okay. After reading your review I have the sudden urge to go buy this book, but I've settled on adding it to my TBR list. The story just sounds interesting and... unique!

    Thanks for the great review! Hopefully I'll be able to read this one soon.

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  19. I started this book a while ago, but I became so distracted by other stuff that I ended up putting aside. After reading this review, I'm smacking myself on the head and wondering, "WHY?!!" This sounds like it has everything I love and I want to meet these wonderful characters. I will definitely make this a priority!!

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  20. I think that Nat's letter to you works for me too if your replace "Natalie" with "Mimi" and "I Should Stop Reading Your Blog but Hey, We Both Know I Won't" with "An Addict to Brodie's Amazing Reviews and Will NOT Go to an Intervention." x) Hehe this was just such an AMAZING review, Brodie! I promised a friend I'd get on reading this about... three months ago haha, and I never had the chance. But you just re-perked my interest! I'll probably be raising my fist and cheering right with you! :')

    AMAZING review, Brodie! Even though you're very unhealthy for our TBR pile orders, we still love you and your super-convincing super-powers! ;) <3

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  21. BRODIEEEEEEEEEEEEE! WHY DO YOU HAVE TO BE SO CONVINCING, HUH?!?!?! I stopped reading this after like 20 pages, BUT I'M REGRETTING THAT DECISION NOWW!!!! WHYYYY?! I WANT TO CONTINUE READING THIS NOW!!!! Okayyy...so EVERYONE seems to love the lack of romance in this book, but...but...MEEEE LIKE SOME SEXY ROMANCEEEE! Ahh well...if you say it's realistic, then I believe you :D FANTABULOUS REVIEW, BRODIEEEE!<3 I shall go hunt down a copy :DD

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  22. I'm sooooo glad you loved it too! I was so pleasantly surprised by this one... I knew it would be good, but it completely blew me away. Woosh! And it even made me truly want to dive into that science myself, which isn't the easiest thing to do! I so need the sequel! Fantastic review, as always!

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  23. I've heard great things about this book, but I haven't had the chance to read it yet. Though it's been on my TBR list for a LOOONG time. It sounds amazing. Your review has made me want to read it so much more! I'll definitely have to get a copy ASAP. Great review!

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  24. OK, so, err... I totally wasn't going to read this book... not that I have anything against it... I just didn't have any desire to... and then you go and say this:

    "Kira is right up there with some of my favourite heroines. She's got courage, spirit and a beautiful kindness, but stubborn as a mule (something I can relate to!). She is a poster child for standing up for what you believe in. Even when the risks are paramount and she admits fear to herself, she still doesn't back down."

    FRAXING HELL, EO!! (Evil Overlord. Duh)
    How am I supposed to not read this now? Huh? HUUUUH? AAHFDJAFDA. I just... seriously, it sounds EPIC. I love the whole post-apocalyptic, race-on-the-verge-of-extinction thing, and... and... AND! *FLAILS* MUST. HAVE. WANT. NEED.
    Yes? :D

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