Partials by Dan Wells (Book Review)

Title: Partials (Partials Sequence #1)

Author: Dan Wells

Release Date: February 28th, 2012

Publisher: Balzer + Bray

Format: Hardcover

Source: Purchased

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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.-Goodreads

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My Thoughts:

I felt that Dan Wells has a created a world so unique and different that has set it apart from any other dystopian worlds. It was a not only a mix of  dystopian and post apocalypse, but also sci-f. A great combination if I must say so myself.

Partials takes place in a futuristic world, in the year 2076, where the human race is slowly becoming extinct with only 50,000 humans left on Earth. Working as a medic-intern, Kira Walker is constantly facing deaths of newborns who either die immediately after they are born, or after 56 hours, due to a virus called “RM” that kills them. Kira is tired of having to wait for scientists and doctors to find a cure, so once her best friend gets pregnant, Kira takes no chance in waiting and immediately makes up her mind of trying to find a cure herself. Through her actions, you can see how determined Kira is to not only save her best friend, but also everyone else who is facing this disaster, and I liked that about her. Though it did get annoying at times when she felt like she had to save EVERYONE. I wanted to say, “lets be a little realistic here, Kira.”

As for the side characters, I felt attached to only a few of them especially one of them, but was devastated when Dan Wells made the choice he did. Although I suppose it was for the best. It was a brave move and I felt Mr.Wells wasn’t afraid to do something to a character. It was very refreshing to see that. The Partials however, were very interesting, and mysterious, because they definitely do play a big part in the plot.

Now you may be wondering, where did this so-called virus “RM” come from? Well as the title reads, “Partials” are actually human looking robots whom the human race has created to fight for them. However, what they hadn’t seen coming was the fact that the Partials would turn against them, leaving them with a disease they must endure, including future generations being unable to bear any children. Therefore, explains the reason as to why the human race is slowly dying because for the obvious reason, they are unable to reproduce. Being someone who is very clever and is willing to take risks, Kira comes up with a brillaint plan of hunting down a Partial, and using it as a “guinea pig” in order to find at least something that will help her for her research to finding a cure.

Immediately the first thought I had when Kira mentioned her plan-heck she’s brilliant, she should have been a scientist. Then it occurred to me that, how is it possible that after many years of top scientists, researchers and doctors working hard to come with a plan to find a cure(that is likely to work), it is instead a sixteen year old who comes up with a plan, that just suddenly popped up in her mind. I don’t know maybe it’s just me, but I found that slightly strange. Of course I didn’t let that interfere with my love for this book.

Partials did however start off with a a slow pace, but gradually picked up once the action kicked in, but no worries, until then you won’t be bored out your mind. This book is not only full of action, but also has a a lot of science to it, more heavily leading to the biology side, since Kira is a medic-intern. So there is a chunk of medical stuff about the virus in this book. Though by being a bit of a science geek myself, I took my time with understanding all the medical terms and ended up enjoying it because unlike in school, where the scientific terms went above my head, I didn’t allow that to happen with Partials because I wanted the full effect of  the plot. Dan Wells has definitely done his research to the full extent.

This book kept me excited and grasping for more, as answers to my questions started to reveal itself. The twists in this book were mostly unpredictable and a shocker, which leads to the next thing, the ending. Totally did not see that one coming! Those of you who have read it, you know what I’m talking about, and those who haven’t, well, be prepared(unlike  me) and have the next book by your side because I’m telling you, crazy plot twist! So once I finished Partials of course my jaw was hanging because I needed the next book. Ever since then I’ve been on the hunt for the sequel, Fragments, yet still haven’t purchased a copy of it. You see, I’m horrible when it comes to reading a series. It takes me a longgg time to pick up its sequels. Shameful, I know. That however, is a topic for another time. 🙂

Although Partials mainly focuses on the plot rather than the characters, it was still an excellent debut to the start of a futuristic post-apocalypse trilogy. If you love a mix of science fiction, post apocalypse, and dystopian with a slice of mystery all in one, then I highly recommend this book! You will not be disappointed.

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Of Poseidon by Anna Banks (Book Review)

Title: Of Poseidon (The Syrena Legacy #1)

Author: Anna Banks

Release Date: May 22nd, 2012

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Format: Hardcover

Source: Purchased

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Galen is the prince of the Syrena, sent to land to find a girl he’s heard can communicate with fish. Emma is on vacation at the beach. When she runs into Galen—literally, ouch!—both teens sense a connection. But it will take several encounters, including a deadly one with a shark, for Galen to be convinced of Emma’s gifts. Now, if he can only convince Emma that she holds the key to his kingdom…

Told from both Emma and Galen’s points of view, here is a fish-out-of-water story that sparkles with intrigue, humor, and waves of romance. -Goodreads

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My Thoughts:

Of Poseidon is one of those really fun, entertaining, and intriguing kind of book, with a mix of greek mythology.(However, by having an interest in Greek mythology, there was an issue I came across with in this novel which I will get into later in my review.) I would say its not to heavy on the Greek mythology but well balanced, making the book more light hearted and enjoyable to read about. Several times I found my self laughing out and gushing over what the characters where saying and how they responded to each other. I couldn’t help but fly through this book and once it had ended, I was wanting for more.

The opening scene of this story surprisingly caught my interest. It takes off with Emma, our main female protagonist, is on summer vacation with her best friend Chole at the beach. While clumisly running around, she stumbles and literally smacks face first into some random guy’s chest. Totally normal.(Aha just kidding) From then, the story takes off and starts to grow and develop.

Firstly, I really liked the way Emma communicated. She spoke in the most natural, wittiest way, sounding just like a teenager. This made her to be someone I was easily able to connect with. Her personality was also very teenage-like as she was a very lively, and sweet and does stuff such as hanging out in the beach her best friend, swooning over hot guys, etc. A character trait that suited her very well. Even when she was told about her gift and how important she was, she seemed to handle the situation very well.

Then there’s Galen. If I were to describe to you what type of male character Galen is, he is the kind where woman would melt under the sight of his appearance. Yeah,  that basically sums it up. Though to be honest there were time when I found him to be quite charming for his sweetness and protectiveness for Emma. Although there were times when I found him to be overprotective of her and ordered her around way too many times but I was glad when Emma took the matter in her hands and found the courage to stand up for herself.

Speaking of Emma and Galen, I found it very unique that not only is it told from both of their POV’s, but also how Emma’s is told in first person, and Galen’s in third. At times it was difficult from the transition of  Emma to Galen, but after a while I’ve managed to get used to it.

Despite enjoying the plot, characters and the whole understanding of Syrena,(not mermaids as they dislike being referred to that term) I did have face a few problems with this book. As previously mentioned, I have an interest in Greek mythology since a couple of years ago, when I first read the Percy Jackson series. However, while reading Of Poseidon, I noticed that the author hasn’t done her research right. In Of Poseidon it was clearly written that Triton and Poseidon are brothers when in fact, Triton is Poseidon’s son. A part of me inside died a little that the author had made a mistake-which may not seem like a big deal but really it is-and didn’t bother to fix her mistake.

Another thing I cam across while reading this book is that it deals with a major issue;sexism. During the book there was scene when the side characters were arguing about marriage and that woman are to chosen only if they are able to mate. The message I am getting from this is that woman are to be ordered around by males, that they must obey them no matter what. This upsets me because (being a female myself) I feel that making them appear weak is a disgrace to all woman, and that perhaps if the author had portrayed the sexist society in this book differently, in a manner where it is wrong, than things would have been much better.

The ending of this book was not the kind I was expecting. A cliffhanger. Everybody loves those…right?(Nah, just kiddin’) I was ready to leave the house instantly and head over to the bookstore but of course that didn’t happen. So instead I strangled a pillow while I created theories as to what will happen next because that cliffhanger was seriously not a nice one. I’m quite excited for the next one and hopefully will able to get it in my hands very soon.

Overall, I recommend you give Of Poseidon a go(unless the topic sexism doesn’t work out for you, you might want to stay away from this book). Despite the two major problems I had, they didn’t keep me from enjoying the story overall and the ending will definitely have you wanting for more.

Across the Universe by Beth Revis (Book Review)

     

Title: Across the Universe (Across the Universe #1)

Author: Beth Revis

Release Date: January 11th, 2011

Publisher: Razorbill

Format: Paperback

Source: Purchased

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A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone – one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship – tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn’t do something soon, her parents will be next.

Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there’s only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

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My Thoughts:

First of all can we all please take a look at how beautiful the cover of the first edition of “Across the Universe” is? Publishers why did you have to change it when it already has caught so many peoples eyes at the bookstore.  This is one thing I still don’t-and probably never will-understand nowadays as to what goes on in there minds. *Sighs* (Though to be honest I’ve actually grown to like the newer covers for the ATU trilogy, and since I own a copy of second edition cover-which I don’t like btw), I may as well purchase the rest-including the first-in the new covers so that they all match.^_^)

At least the map of the ship located inside the book is gorgeous:

Across the Universe Map

Anyways, I LOVED this book with all my heart. I can’t even stress enough how many times I’ve recommended this to my friends and always smiled while explaining to them what it’s about. You may or may not know this but one of my most favourite genre in YA is Sci-fi, specifically when it is focused on space. And that my friend, is where this book takes place. A book about 2 main characters, on a spaceship flying in space to another planet with romance and mystery. Done. BAM! I am SOLD. Every expectations of mine has been met and I was very satisfied.

Amy, a 16 year old girl, had the choice to join her parents on a mission to another planet that will take approximately 300 years, on a spaceship called Godspeed. They were to be frozen both inside and out, locked in individual chambers, and awoken in the future where they will have reached the planet. With Amy’s parent’s being very important people, it is a must for them to take this mission no matter what, leaving Amy with a choice. Either to stay with her beloved boyfriend, friends and other family members, or leave them forever. Choosing to go, Amy and her parents get put away in there chambers, forzen, and onto the ship.

250 years later, Amy is unexpectedly unplugged from her chambers by someone, leaving her to melt and coming close to facing death. Fortunately, she was saved in time and was told by a 17 year old boy named Elder, raised to be the future leader of the ship, that there was approximately 50 years left until they reached their destination and came to conclusion that someone was trying to kill her. Later do we find that Amy for sure isn’t the last to be unplugged, but may be the first  to several more. Slowly we get to the see the story unravel as it is Amy’s job to not only stick out like a sore thumb and fit in, but to find who her murderer is, and stop he/she before things get out of hand.

The fact that this book took place on a ship was so fascinating. We meet people who are different from those who live on earth, not only appearance wise but also their lifestyle. Since the people living on the ship were literally born on the ship, they have never been or seen earth, so they try replicate a world relatively close to it using stories they’ve heard about it as well as there own imagination. Such as creating their own sun, or their own land, making it as close as possible to the real thing, when really it’s not. Something like that was so intriguing to read about.

Now what I really liked about the book was how it was told from two POV’s, both Amy’s and Elder’s. It was nice to see what the characters were thinking and see several events take place from their own perspectives, either scenes we might of seen differently from the other, or maybe not at all. Amy I felt was a strong-willed character who was determined to dig deep and find the truth behind the hidden secrets which lay withing the ship, alongside Elder who was also a great character and I grew to like him alot.

Overall, choosing to read this book was probably one of the best choices I’ve made this year because once I’ve finished it, it  made me realize how much I missed exploring more about space. This book is jam packed with mystery, thrilling moments, and a fast pace I couldn’t bear to set it down. I really loved this book and it is one my absolute favourite reads as of 2014 and I can’t wait to pick up the sequel and continue on with this trilogy. Highly recommended! 🙂

 

 

Blog Tour: Prototype by M.D. Waters (Book Review)

 

       Title:  Prototype (Archetype #2)

       Author: M.D. Waters

       Release Date: July 24th, 2014

       Publisher: Dutton Adult

       Format: ARC

       Source: Publisher

* I received an ARC copy from Penguin Canada in exchange for an honest review. *

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The stunning debut that began with Archetype— and has readers buzzing—concludes in Prototype, when a woman’s dual pasts lock onto a collision course, threatening her present and future.

Emma looks forward to the day when she can let go of her past—both of them. After more than a year on the run, with clues to her parents’ whereabouts within her grasp, she may finally find a place to settle down. Start a new life. Maybe even create new memories with a new family.

But the past rises to haunt her and to make sure there’s nowhere on the planet she can hide. Declan Burke wants his wife back, and with a little manipulation and a lot of reward money, he’s got the entire world on his side. Except for the one man she dreads confronting the most: Noah Tucker.

Emma returns to face what she’s done but finds that the past isn’t the problem. It’s the present—and the future it represents. Noah has moved on and another woman is raising their daughter.

In the shocking conclusion to M.D. Waters’s spectacular debut, Emma battles for her life and her freedom, tearing down walls and ripping off masks to reveal the truth. She’s decided to play their game and prove she isn’t the woman they thought she was. Even if it means she winds up dead. Or worse, reborn.

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 My Thoughts:

Prototype is the final installment in a duo-logy, which I loved so much more than the first book, Archetype. I received an ARC copy of this book of which I am so grateful for (so thank you PenguinCanada) and couldn’t help but start right away. So I ended up reading this book back in February and since then, I was very excited to share my thoughts on it. This book is a fast paced sequel that starts right where Archetype left off so fear not, as you will be immediately hooked to this gripping sequel within minutes.

There is a lot of crazy action and survival going on in this book, as the book starts off with Emma on the run not only in search for her parents, but away from her husband Declan, whom she is being hunted down by. There was so much more world building in this book (which Archetype lacked of since it was  mainly based on Emma’s development as a character) and we see more of how the society has started to grow and change as Declan slowly starts to take control of it in his own hands. It is now up to Emma and the choices she makes.

The plot just kept getting interesting, leading to many events I didn’t see coming, making me feel everything at once. I not only got to see an amazing world building but also the choices and sacrifices several characters had to make in order to survive. In Prototype, the world not only revolved around Emma any more but also other characters prior to the story..

I was amazed by how much Emma has grown as a woman in Prototype. Those of you who have read the first book, may know that Archetype was mainly focused on Emma, who has lost her memory in which she starts to learn and discover who she is. After finding out the truth about herself, Emma knew she is not the once naive, clueless girl anymore, she was now the woman whose life was in stake as she is in on many secrets when she isn’t suppose to. However, she will not allow another single soul feed her lies, and will instead stand up for herself. She was determined to not only find out more about her past, but also create her future. Emma’s transformation into a strong female lead is what really amazed me, and is the kind of protagonist needed in a dangerous world like this.

Her relationship with Declan and Noah is very complex. In the previous book, she was unaware of the kind of man her husband Declan, was, and struggled to make the choice  of whom to believe. Either him or the voice in her head. Noah on the other hand, is the man whom she was very involved with in the past. So of course this leads to a love triangle where Emma could not help but feel something for both of them. At times she gets torn between what decision to make and whether to do it or not. She doesn’t know whether the decision she will make will either be the right one, or be the end of her. I personally don’t mind when a book has love triangles-well really, it depends. In this case it works out well and I was obviously rooting for one of them *cough*Noah*cough* whom I think is very swoon worthy. ^_^

Okay now on to the next part; Ahh~the side characters we meet in this novel! I loved them so much!(Well most of them anyway) We see Emma bond and create new friendships with individuals I can’t help but also be attached with. Some are so perky and lovable and also witty, I wouldn’t mind having friends like them in real life! Of course once this novel had ended, I wanted more, hence the reason I wished we got some more character development from these characters. Nevertheless, I still enjoyed these characters relationship not only with Emma but also among others although they are considered to be minor characters, they had definitely played a major role in Prototype. I even heard that the author will be creating a spin-off series based on a particular character *cough*Leigh*cough* which of course I am super pumped about!

Not only am I head over heels with this book, but with the duo-logy itself. I personally really enjoyed this series over all and will most likely re-read my favourite parts and perhaps someday both books entirely. It had all the elements that suited my taste: consistent pace, phenomenal world building, character development, and strong relationships with others such as  friendships. Most importantly, I thought the idea of how Mrs.Waters  interpreted an important issue of what women deal with every day, to help create her story was very smart of her.This is because I feel that by using this issue of how women are being treated as if they are worth less than men, will help readers(including myself) become aware of how it is wrong for women to be treated this way, and that both genders should be treated equally. Thus, by creating a story not only to entertain readers but to spread an important message, in my mind is brilliant.

Overall, I was highly satisfied with the conclusion to this great dystopian/sci-fi duo-logy and will definitely recommend those who haven’t picked up this series, immediately do so with Archetype.


Great News!

Archetype is not only available  in Hardcover but also with a new cover for the Paperback edition!

Also be on a look out for the new cover for the paperback edition for Prototype!