The story of Partials takes place 11 years after humanity lost a terrible war. Basically, we created super soldiers (Partials) to fight for us. Of course, after they won the war they turned on us… Worse yet, right at the same time, there was a virus which killed 99.96% of humanity–including any new pregnancies.
So that’s where we start. Humanity is stuck on Long Island while the Partials are out there ™. Because no babies can survive the virus, the youngest living people are 14. The main characters are roughly 16. Even stranger, in an effort to figure out how to cure the virus, the Hope Act has been enacted. All women 18 or older must get pregnant as often as possible.
It’s an odd premise, but each part at least follows through. It’s a little strange that the main characters are so good at what they do (always a problem with YA fiction), but at least the idea that they had to grow up quickly helps offset that.
Other than that, it’s an interesting world. The action keeps things moving, especially towards the latter end of the book, and I actually feel for the characters as things keep going sideways on them. There were a few twists that followed the standard YA post-apocalyptic tropes (is that a thing now) but a few that I missed, which is nice.
Overall, it’s perhaps not as strong as some of the other books I’ve read this year (although it’s the best post-apocalyptic YA :)), but it’s more than good enough to finish the series.