Replica by Lauren Oliver
Published : 2016
Version Read : hardback
Read More about it here.
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 bio-hazard 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.
This was one of my most anticipated reads of last year but sadly I didn’t get to it until now. This book did not disappoint me, but there were several things that kept this from being a five star review.
I started with Lyra’s story and finished it before going on to Gemma’s. I had actually wanted to start with the “normal” girl, but I’m glad I made this mistake. While Lyra’s story was not as interesting to me as Gemma’s, it was the perfect one to start with.
I enjoyed reading about the world from someone who didn’t know anything about it. I thought the names that she called things were weird but if I didn’t know what something is called, I would probably name it something stupid too. I know that a lot of people had a problem with the fact that she was maybe too interested in the way that 72 looked and moved. I don’t know about you, but when I see a cute guy I can appreciate the way he looks, even if I’m in the middle of a very stressful event. Besides children are interested in the other sex, so it’s only natural that she would too. It took me a little too long to get into her story and that is my only complaint about Lyra.
I thoroughly enjoyed Gemma’s story the most. I don’t think that Lyra’s story gave too much away and I found myself being surprised by some of the twists and turns that Gemma took. I connected with her because I too am an overweight girl. There was one moment when Gemma thought “I’m not going to fit”, that made me smile. I have this thought all the time, almost daily. It’s something that none overweight people don’t consider. Whether you’re going to fit in that seat, or if you sit on it, will it break. This made Gemma so much more real to me.
I’m very interested in continuing this story and seeing where she goes with the story. I would recommend this to anyone who like Lauren Oliver, or who wants a great introduction to a could be adventure.