Author: Lauren Oliver
Series: Replica #1
Release Date: 4 October 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Sci-fi
Add it on Goodreads
From a distance, the Haven Institute, tucked away on a private island off the coast of Florida, looks serene and even beautiful. But up close the locked doors, military guards, and biohazard suits tell a different story. In truth, it is a clandestine research facility where thousands of replicas, or human models, are born, raised, and observed.
But when a surprise attack is launched on Haven, two of its young experimental subjects—Lyra, or 24, and the boy known only as 72—manage to escape. As they make their way through a new and menacing environment, they meet a stranger named Gemma, who has embarked on a perilous quest of her own. And as Lyra tries to understand Haven’s purpose, she uncovers earth-shattering secrets that will change the lives of both girls.
Gemma has been in and out of hospitals her whole life. A sickly child, she has grown into a lonely adolescent whose life is circumscribed by home, school, and her best friend, April.
But after she is nearly abducted by a stranger claiming to know her, Gemma starts to investigate her family’s past and discovers her father’s mysterious connection to the secretive Haven research facility. Hungry for answers, she travels to Florida, only to stumble upon two human models, or replicas, 24 and 72—and a completely new set of questions. As Gemma tries to unravel the mysteries of Haven, she learns terrible truths about herself and her family that will threaten to destroy everything she loves.
Two girls, two stories, one novel.
While the stories of Gemma and Lyra mirror each other, each contains revelations critically important to the other story. Their narratives can be read separately or in alternating chapters.
Replica is a science fiction novel that consists of two different perspectives. There are different ways to read this novel and I read all of Lyra’s perspectives before reading Gemma’s. This novel addresses ethical and moral problems in the scientific field since it involves experimenting drugs on clones or replicas.
One aspect that is pretty disturbing is that replicas didn’t see themselves as human beings but instead, as disposable machinery that were of no worth. What made it worse is that the scientists and workers who were working in the Haven facility were the ones who instilled those values into the replicas. They didn’t feel remorseful or disgusted, not all but most, even though they were technically conducting experimentation on human beings. Another aspect is how the Haven institute officials were able to do anything in order to silence citizens who had too much information on the institute.
There is some mystery elements in the novel since answers were revealed as you proceed into the story. What makes this novel unique is how the two different points of view had their own unique storylines and each storyline would reveal different things about the Haven facility and the origin of the two girls. What interests me is how the characters in the book had their own unique traits and personalities. All of them seemed so different and yet they were able to meet due to similar circumstances, of wanting to find out more about Haven facility or to run away from it.
This novel addresses relationships between family and friends. It shows how a father was able to sacrifice everything to find and protect his daughter that had been taken away from him for years. How Gemma and Pete were willing to sacrifice their lives to protect Lyra and 72 even if it meant possibly getting killed by Haven officials in the process.
Overall, Replica is an amazing novel with great world building and amazing character development.