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Literature / Replica

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Replica is a young adult book series created by Marilyn Kaye.

The protagonist, Amy Candler, is Number Seven in a line of thirteen female clones genetically designed to be perfect. Amy's adoptive mother, Nancy Candler, is one of the original scientists involved in Amy's creation. When she and the other scientists discovered that the true aim of Project Crescent was to breed the Amys with a group of male clones called the Andys to create a master race of superior human beings to Take Over the World, they decided that this was unethical and burned down the lab after sending all of the Amys to adoption agencies with false birth certificates.

At puberty, Amy becomes extremely gifted overnight. She has binocular eyes that are able to see from miles away, Super-Speed, Super-Strength, the ability to memorize any information she reads or studies, etc. She has no abilities that human beings do not possess, she is simply better at everything she does than nearly anyone else on Earth. The heads of the Organization become aware that the clones survived and start hunting Amy.

The series has a spanning Myth Arc centered around Amy, her clone sisters, and the Organization that created them and the Andys. Many of the books, such as Secret Clique, do not really provide much plot-relevant information and are somewhat non-linear. Other books, like The Best of the Best (about a boy genius arriving at Parkside Middle School) become relevant later in the series. In trying to figure out (and survive) the mysterious Organization, Amy discovers that one of her clone sisters is involved with a neo-Nazi organization, which ends up being directly linked to The Organization. The series touches on the moral implications of destroying everyone who isn't perfect and "sterilizing" human compassion.

The series consists of the following titles:

  1. Amy, Number Seven
  2. Pursuing Amy
  3. Another Amy
  4. Perfect Girls
  5. Secret Clique
  6. And the Two Shall Meet
  7. The Best of the Best
  8. Mystery Mother
  9. The Fever
  10. Ice Cold
  11. Lucky Thirteen
  12. In Search of Andy
  13. The Substitute
  14. The Beginning
  15. The Transformation
  16. Happy Birthday, Dear Amy
  17. Missing Pieces
  18. Return of the Perfect Girls
  19. Dreamcrusher
  20. Like Father, Like Son
  21. Virtual Amy
  22. The Plague Trilogy: Rewind
  23. The Plague Trilogy: Play
  24. The Plague Trilogy: Fast Forward
  25. All About Andy
  26. War of the Clones
  27. Amy, On Her Own

Replica contains examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: Andy Denker's father turned out to support The Organization and allowed him to be experimented on as a child.
  • Achilles' Heel: Amy's earlobe. Strangely, the Andys, who were created by different scientists, are not immune to this.
  • A-Cup Angst: Averted when Tasha gloats about her new B-cup bra, Amy is completely ambivalent and does not seem to care that she is still an A.
  • Adam and Eve Plot: Near the end of the series, it is revealed that the Amys were all cloned from a woman named Eve Carrington and the Andys were cloned from Mr. Devon, whose first name turns out to be Adam. They end up dating.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Played straight with Chris Skinner, Amy's third boyfriend, who eventually catches Tasha's eye. Also played straight when Andy is introduced as mysterious and potentially dangerous.
  • Alpha Bitch: Jeanine Bryant in books 1-10, Linda, and possibly Simone after that. Among the clones, Aimee/Number 10 Number 5 (until it's revealed she was Good All Along) could count.
  • A Nazi by Any Other Name: The Organization turns out to have goals similar to the Nazis then turns out to be an actual neo-Nazi organization.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In Return of the Perfect Girls during the scene where the girls realize they've been kidnapped, Aimee Evans passes up the chance to sob about never being able to see her parents again and tries to get The Organization to understand how important her commercial shoot (and acting career) is.
  • Artistic License Biology: The clones are turned into selfish compliant jerks in the eighteenth book by having their emotional proteins turned off.
    • The Organization is able to "turn off" the clones' perfect DNA from some remote location, turning them into ordinary people without even having to be in the same room with them.
    • Amy is given some kind of genetic acceleration to turn her twenty-five on her thirteenth birthday.
    • The story behind how the clones were actually made perfect is changed a couple of times and never actually starts to make sense.
    • The bad guys repeatedly try and steal Amy's DNA by cutting her hair or fingernails.
  • Artistic License Engineering: Of course, AA batteries can power an android even stronger than enhanced humans.
  • Beach Episode: Return of the Perfect Girls, though it's not completely unjustified.
  • Big Bad: The Director, who turns out to be the Parisian tour guide who fell off the Eiffel Tower reincarnated as an android. Yeah...
  • Blackmail: What happens to Jeanine in Ice Cold.
  • Cloning Blues: Amy has this after finding out the truth of her origins, though she does accept it with time. Aly has it especially bad as she's the "defective" clone who doesn't have the enhanced abilities her "sisters" possess.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything??: The Organization is strikingly (deliberately) reminiscent of the Nazi movement.
  • Evil Plan: In Secret Clique the popular group plans to make all the people in their way disappear using telekinetic powers.
  • Evil Twin: The protagonist has a few fellow clones who aren't exactly good - Aimee Evans (Number Ten) is a self-absorbed jerkass, Annie Perrault (Number Nine) is a Smug Super, and Amy Number Five is The Quisling (until it's revealed she was Good All Along).
  • Fake-Out Make-Out: In Return of the Perfect Girls, when Amy and Andy are spotted plotting against the Organization, Andy covers it up by explaining they were searching for a hiding place to hook up in. Hilariously, or squickily, they're told, "You'll mate when we order you to!"
  • Freudian Excuse: In book sixteen, Amy runs into a couple trying to help troubled/runaway kids. The male half of this couple has violent anger problems that stem from his parents poorly handling his psychological disorder and forcing him into the hospital as a child.
  • Good All Along: Number Five appeared to be collaborating with the Organization and selling her fellow clones out until it's revealed in Return of the Perfect Girls that she was only pretending to be cooperating with them to figure out exactly what they were planning and stop it all from within.
  • The Mole: In Return of the Perfect Girls, it is revealed that Number Five was actually faking her cooperation with The Organization in order to get information out of them.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Every Amy suffers from this at the end of the series. Except for Number Seven (see above).
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Amy was desperate every time she lost her power. Tasha's nerves were really at stake because she stands Amy always being superior to her, and then she must support Amy when she's depressed because she's not superior anymore. The series ends with Amy regaining her powers, enhanced, by volunteering as a test subject for the Evil Genius Creepy Child she stopped two dozen books before!
  • Important Haircut: Amy gets her first real haircut ever at home, from her mother, to avoid the dangers of a salon.
  • Inexplicably Identical Individuals: Averted. Though all of the Amys start off with the same name and the same extraordinary skills, each Amy has a different personality, and three of the Amys (Aimee Evans/Number 10, Annie Perrault/Number 9, and Aly Kendricks/Number 13) are given different names by their adoptive parents, probably to keep the reader from confusing them.
  • Inside a Computer System: The entire plot of Virtual Amy.
  • In the Future, Humans Will Be One Race: Justified trope. When Amy visits the future she sees the world that the Amys and Andys created by repopulating it with superior (and Caucasian) beings.
  • Just Friends: Amy and Andy in the end of the series. As well as Amy and every other male character she was interested in.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: In Dreamcrusher, Amy is hit by lightning and becomes temporarily psychic.
  • Love Dodecahedron: Much simpler than in other instances. Amy starts off loving Eric who Jeanine is crazy about. Later, Amy cheats on Eric with Andy, who was created to be her genetic soulmate, and then when Eric scorns her, she gets with Chris, who her best friend Tasha eventually takes a liking to.
  • My Nayme Is: Aimee Evans has her name as a variation on the more traditional spelling of Amy.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits: Tasha initially does not want Amy to date her brother, Eric. She gets over it.
  • Mysterious Past: Amy, Number Seven. Andy Denker. Arguably ALL the clones including Chris Skinner who is only revealed to be a clone in the special Chris-centric book.
  • Nebulous Evil Organisation: The Organization. Big duh.
    • Even worse: The Omniscient Council of Vagueness was never defeated. In the end, they are on the secret services watchlist, so they don't dare to move a finger anymore. Well, thank you CIA for terrifying an evil director we never saw!
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The Pink Smock ladies in Perfect Girls are allegedly defective clones that did not turn out the way The Organization planned, but Amy is certain they were created to be soulless shells who would do The Organization's bidding without question.
  • New-Age Retro Hippie: Monica is quite a stereotypical example.
  • Not Allowed to Grow Up: Amy Candler stays twelve for fifteen books, during which she has more than one spring or summer vacation and returns still in seventh grade.
  • Overnight Age-Up: On her thirteenth birthday, Amy wakes up twenty-five.
  • Plot Hole: There are quite a few.
    • In The Fever we learn that the clones lose their abilities when they get their ears pierced. Before their abilities are lost, they get deathly ill for at least a week. Yet in Book 23, they pierce an enemy clone's ears to render him useless and he does not develop a fever. Neither does Number Five when she decides she wants to live a normal life.
    • Dr. Grace's last name changes at least once during the series.
    • In the first half of the series it seems that the world of Replica relies on science fiction (cloning and genetic engineering are accepted possibilities). When things like emotional proteins and Eve Carrington's miraculous recovery at the hands of Dr. Jaleski happen it starts to seem unclear how much is sci-fi and how much is fantasy.
    • The Organization, despite being powerful and intelligent enough to create perfect clones, create human androids, create near perfection in imperfect people, alter DNA from remote locations, and kidnap genetically superior children multiple times cannot keep said superior children from escaping and can be defeated by some lousy batteries.
  • The Plague: See The Plague Trilogy.
  • Puberty Superpower: The Amys do not become perfect at everything until puberty. For some reason.
    • Except for the fact that they can't get ill, which prevented Amy from any medical exam.
  • Rich Bitch: Jeanine Bryant, Aimee Evans.
  • Sadist Teacher: Ms. Heartshorn in book 13 becomes this before revealing that she's really protecting Amy.
  • Sailor Earth: Because it's known that The Organization created most of its members as clones, many fanfic authors create new sets of clones that are better than the originals (sometimes having magical powers or psychic abilities). Project Star is a notable example.
  • Separated at Birth: Aly thought she and Amy were twin sisters when they first met. Needless to say, she doesn't take the truth that she's a clone (and an imperfect one at that) very well.
  • Shrinking Violet: Amy, Number Three. Apparently growing up on a farm makes you this. Also, Aly in Return of the Perfect Girls. But who wouldn't be in that situation?
  • Skinheads: Annie's friends. The entire Organization counts as well.
  • Sick Episode: The Fever ends up being plot-relevant as it reveals the fact that clones lose all of their abilities when they gets their ears pierced.
  • Smug Super: Annie, to the point she gleefully agrees with the "caretaker" about how superior the clones are in Return of the Perfect Girls.
  • 13 Is Unlucky: Aly was the thirteenth clone produced in the Amy line who turned out to be "defective" and couldn't develop her abilities like the others.
  • Unstable Genetic Code: Annie Perrault after she is age progressed to adulthood.
  • Very Special Episode: Book nine deals with the evils of drugs, while book fifteen deals with the evils of subliminal messages.