Replica (#1) by Lauren Oliver
I was looking for an audiobook to listen to and I found this through my library, so I decided to give it a go! This was a book that I had first heard about when it came out and I was initially intrigued by the premise and idea of the book!
So this book follows the perspective of two girls, Lyra and Gemma. We meet Lyra at the infamous Haven Institute, which is tucked away on a private island off the coast of Florida. What people don’t know about the Haven Institute is that it is a research facility where thousands of replicas, or human clones, are born, raised and observed. Lyra is one of these replicas and when an attack is launched on the Haven Institute, she and another replica (a boy only known as 72) manage to escape. Then we meet Gemma, who is a lonely teen who has been in and out of hospitals her whole life. After a scary and strange encounter with almost being abducted by a stranger, Gemma begins to investigates her family’s past and discovers that her father has a strange connection to the Haven Institute.
Now that you know what this book is about, there is something else that you need to know about this book! This book is written in half, half is from Lyras’ POV and half is from Gemmas’ POV. Both POV’s begin separately as we begin to see what each individual girl’s life is like and then the stories begin to overlap. The book can be read through different ways; you can either read all of Lyras’ story and then read Gemmas’ story OR you can either read all of Gemmas’ story and then Lyras’ story OR you can read alternating chapters between Lyra and then Gemma. This is such an interesting concept and I was even more interested to see how this experience was going to translate to via audiobook.
First, it was crazy to hear the voice of April Kepner from Grey’s Anatomy (Sarah Drew) and it was kind of a fun experience, haha!! Second, I did find that it was more cumbersome to switch back and forth between chapters more than I think it would have felt reading the physical book.
Overall the story was good and fun! I definitely liked reading from Lyras’ perspective more than Gemmas’. I found Gemmas’ character to be annoying and way focused on her body. Now reading through the book, I do understand where this is coming from but it was still infuriating to read from. Lyras’ perspective was really interesting since we get to see more than her own experiences, as we get to learn more about the Haven Institute through her perspective.
I definitely enjoyed the book. There is a second book to this, as it is a duology, and I am still debating on whether or not I will be picking it up soon. I don’t find myself to feel too curious to the rest of the story, but we shall see! Definitely a good reading experience!!