As with most of the books I write reviews for, I received this free from Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I’m not sure if there was an error with the file, but I only received part of the book – Lyra’s part. This may have impacted my view of the book and will change the way I do things here a little.
For starters, here is the Good reads plot summary:
Gemma has been in and out of hospitals since she was born. ‘A sickly child’, her lonely life to date has revolved around her home, school and one best friend, Alice. But when she discovers her father’s connection to the top secret Haven research facility, currently hitting the headlines and under siege by religious fanatics, Gemma decides to leave the sanctuary she’s always known to find the institute and determine what is going on there and why her father’s name seems inextricably linked to it.
Amidst the frenzy outside the institute’s walls, Lyra – or number 24 as she is known as at Haven – and a fellow experimental subject known only as 72, manage to escape. Encountering a world they never knew existed outside the walls of their secluded upbringing , they meet Gemma and, as they try to understand Haven’s purpose together, they uncover some earth-shattering secrets that will change the lives of both girls forever…
Judging from other reviews on Goodreads, Gemma is the stronger, more fully fleshed out character, so I will be reading the rest of Replica eventually as I definitely want to read Gemma’s part of the story.
For me, Lyra’s character is flat out unbelievable. She has been raised in an institution where the children are referred to as numbers, and are not viewed as human beings – they are referred to as “it” by the workers and their individuality is actively discouraged. Lyra mentions many times that she is not used to being touched by others.
Despite having lived her entire life outside of society, Lyra fits in to society remarkably quickly when she escapes from the institute due to a happy twist of fate.She adapts and becomes savvy in a way that I don’t think would happen in the minuscule timeframe given for her to do so.
Lyra also suffers from the unfortunate “I’ve never been loved (or even spoken to a boy) before, but I want to be loved by you” trope with sometimes crops up in YA. Urgh.
Don’t get me wrong, the plot is fine, the way life in the institute is established is interesting although the plot twist is a little predictable but there’s definitely some interesting stuff going on that will make you speed through the book.
I feel badly placed to rate this book, so I do suggest that you check it out. As i feel I only have half the story I rate it
2.5 out of 5 amazing social adaptations.