Partials

by Dan Wells,  Julia Whelan (Narrator)
Audio EditionRead June 2, 2015

Original Release Date:  February 28, 2012

Length: 468 pages

Official Description: (This is book #1 of the Partial Sequence series)

For fans of The Hunger Games, Battlestar Galactica, and Blade Runnercomes the first book in the Partials Sequence, a fast-paced, action-packed, and riveting sci-fi teen series, by acclaimed author Dan Wells.

Humanity is all but extinguished after a war with Partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the 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. But sixteen-year-old Kira is determined to find a solution. As she tries desperately to save what is left of her race, she discovers that that the survival of both humans and Partials rests in her attempts to answer questions about the war’s origin that she never knew to ask.

Playing on our curiosity of and fascination with the complete collapse of civilization, Partials is, at its heart, a story of survival, one that explores the individual narratives and complex relationships of those left behind, both humans and Partials alike—and of the way in which the concept of what is right and wrong in this world is greatly dependent on one’s own point of view.

Supports the Common Core State Standards

My Take:

I love dystopian novels, I don’t know what it is about them, but they just call to me. It doesn’t seem to matter what they are about I love them. Most of the novels I love revolve around two factors 1) War 2) Zombies. This novel is kind of a result of war, but more of the result of human ingenuity. They created a ‘perfect’ clone, one that would be most beneficial in combat, so that humans would not have to perish. These ‘partials’ would fight for whichever government and in theory,  this is a great idea.Not only does a virus sweep through the world, but the partials fought against their makers essentially wiping out humanity. Now the youngest person on earth is 14. No baby can survive and it is up to the new generation to find a cure for the virus that the partials unleashed. There we have our heroine, who may not have new ideas, but she is willing to risk everything to save humanity.

I really enjoyed the story, I can’t even remember the last time I read an adult dystopian novel, but this was a pretty rockin’ young adult. Why? What makes it different? I like the science behind it, I like that there is no supernatural reason for the end of the world. It is basically humanities fault, they decided to play God and it bit them in the butt. I like the heroine, she is  great character, naive, flawed, fearless, and determined. I like the interaction between the humans and the partials, I like that there are so many grey areas, nothing is ‘good vs evil’ anyone could go either way. I liked the adventures, the ideas. One thing this book brought up was the nuclear reactors across the countries, what would happen if people weren’t around to maintain them? I never would have thought about this. It seems such a simple concept, but if one nuclear reactor blew, a large chunk of land would be irradiated and uninhabitable. This author did a fantastic job. If there were an apocalyptic event, I could see it going down like this book, humanity just screwed themselves over, too greedy, too willing to play with genes, cloning, to mess with the natural order.

The writing is fun and engaging, the plot has some pretty typical YA twists and turns, but everything overall is wonderful.

My Favorite Quotes:

“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.”

“I am stronger than my trials.”

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