by Dan Wells
Series: Partials #1
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
Partial is the first novel, in a new series by Dan Wells, acclaimed author of I Am Not a Serial Killer. In this YA, post-apocalyptic dystopia the year is 2076. It has been eleven years since the uprising of the Partials; a group of engineered organic beings who released a virus known as RM. This virus wiped out most of the humanity and left the few remaining unable to produce living offspring.
Wells took me on a fast-paced, breathtaking ride and left me wanting more. The world-building in this novel is fantastic, unique, and believable. Wells painted a world that I could see, and his attention to detail had me riveted. The plot is engaging, and not a page was wasted in the development, and movement of this story. I became completely engrossed, and the rest of my world faded away. The remaining humans are living in or around, Long Island, NY. They are frantically trying to find a cure for RM to stop their dwindling numbers. The community is governed by a small senate that passes laws to ensure the continued existence of mankind. One such law is the Hope Act. It states that every female must become pregnant at the age of eighteen. These women give birth over and over again. For eleven years they have studied and tested but no child has survived. This Act caused friction within the community, and some left; becoming a group known as the Voice. Violent outbreaks and theft have become a source of tension between the two. The Partials haven’t been seen in eleven years, but both sides fear an attack.
Protagonist Kira is a sixteen-year-old medic in training. Wells has created a strong, fearless, and bright heroine. I immediately connected and saw her as a believable leader. Despite her age, Kira is wise beyond her years and wants to find a cure for RM. Wells gives us a female character who can think for herself regardless of her friend’s opinions. Kira believes that the cure is connected with the source of the infection, and wants to study a Partial. Despite being forbidden to do so, she, and a team of her friends head out in search of one. The tale that unfolds is stunning, mind-boggling and one of the best I have read. I truly cannot wait to get my hands on book two.
Partials is a must read in 2012 for fans of post-apocalyptic dystopias. The novel is set to release on February 28, 2012, and will be available in paper and eBook formats. I have added Dan Wells to my list of must-read authors. The next book in the series is entitled Failsafe with an expected publication of 2013.