Friday, 24 February 2012

Early Review: Partials

-       Dan Wells

Publisher: HarperTeen - Released 28th February

Ecopy courtesy of netgalley & HarperTeen

The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials--engineered organic beings identical to humans--has decimated the population. Reduced to only 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 have pushed what's left of humanity to the brink of 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 find 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.

Kira is sixteen, a medic and one of the last humans to be born before a devastating war with the Partials, who release a virus that wiped out most of humanity. Those remaining group together on Long Island and try to have as many babies as possible, but none of the babies born survive the virus. With just short months to go before she is forced to become pregnant, Kira becomes determined to find a cure...unfortunately; she is convinced that the cure lies in the study of humanities enemies, the Partials...

Kira is an unusually mixed character – at times she acts completely adult, working hard as a medic and research, highly intelligent, but then she suddenly change and act extremely young and naive. This made it difficult for me to connect with her completely, although I did like her determination and stubbornness. Plans never seemed to work the way she expected them too – and it kept surprising her. She also seemed to have a marvellous ability to talk anyone into doing anything in a really short space of time!

A lot of the story is spent racing back and forth as Kira and her friends focus on the task at hand. It felt like levels in a computer game with the stakes raised each time a mission is completed. This led to a certain amount of tension and excitement that was very enjoyable to read. I really did enjoy the writing style which was easy to follow and I raced through the story. I liked the idea of a deserted New York and humanity under threat. The moral implications of enforced pregnancy is touched on but never really explored in detail and leads to the big question of freedom verses survival.

An intriguing set up with some true moral grey areas, and plenty of action but some of the execution doesn’t hold up to close scrutiny. And I have to admit I guessed the end early one. Still it was a very enjoyable read!

Recommended for fans of Holly Black and Mike Lancaster. 7 out of 10


  1. I'm glad we were of the same mind about this book, Mel! The dead giveaway is the beginning when she hears someone's heart beating :)))

  2. Still sounds like an interesting YA despite the failings. I know I'd be jumping for this one if the grey moral areas had held up to at least a fair amount of scrutiny. I still may read this, but I may library book it. Great review!

  3. Sounds like something I could read, but not buy, I need awesome for that.