Author: Cat Patrick
Synopsis (according to Goodreads):
A riveting story from Cat Patrick, author of Forgotten and Revived.
17-year-olds Lizzie, Ella, and Betsey Best grew up as identical triplets... until they discovered a shocking family secret. They're actually closer than sisters, they're clones. Hiding from a government agency that would expose them, the Best family appears to consist of a single mother and one daughter named Elizabeth. Lizzie, Ella, and Betsey take turns going to school, attending social engagements, and a group mindset has always been a de facto part of life...
Then Lizzie meets Sean Kelly, a guy who seems to see into her very soul. As their relationship develops, Lizzie realizes that she's not a carbon copy of her sisters; she's an individual with unique dreams and desires, and digging deeper into her background, Lizzie begins to dismantle the delicate balance of an unusual family that only science could have created.
Clones! Why is the first book that I have picked up that had such an original (fitting) idea? To be fair, I hadn't even read the synopsis before I was digging through my library books and selected this one on a whim. I opened it up, read the inside cover, and gasped openly. How had I not read this yet? Must remedy this posthaste.
The Originals is a story about three girls who live one life. They are clones and should be identical in personalities as well as appearance and DNA, correct? Not so much. It soon becomes evident that Ella is the preppy goodie-two-shoes, Betsey is the inquisitive detective, and Lizzie is the angsty rebel. They live as one, but are, in fact, three very different people.
Their differences become even more pronounced when they are permitted to date but only one guy. The choices are between David Chancellor, the popular, cocky, football playing student government officer, or Sean Kelly, the artsy, laid back heartthrob. You would think that this would be further evidence of their differences to their mother, but she still seems oblivious, as if wishing them to be the exact same to make her life easier.
Throughout the girls' desire to know the truth about their creation, their need to have their own lives, and their avoidance of attention from government officials, Lizzie, Ella, and Betsey have their hands full. Something perhaps even three people can't handle through combined efforts.
This story made me more angry than happy throughout it's reading. I found myself absolutely hating their mother. Who makes three very different girls act as one? Who only allows their children out of the house during their allotted time? Who treats their children more like lab rats than their daughters? This woman, apparently. I felt terrible for Lizzie who fell hard for the sexy photographer, Sean Kelly, because she was not permitted to be with him. She was forced to sneak around, hide her bliss, and hope that things would change one day so she could finally be happy and have a life of her own.
Through Lizzie's unwavering determination, the Best clones set out on a journey to find out whether the original of their cloning was still alive and what that would mean as far as their mother's lies to them. How much of their life is fiction and how much is reality? This is what The Originals is all about. Truth, reality, and being who you wish to be no matter who approves of it.
The Originals takes it's readers into a world of science and self-discovery where individuality could cause drastic consequences. For Lizzie, Ella, and Betsey they are prisoners of their mother's making and forced to live and act as is dictated to them.
I liked the scientific aspects of the book, although some of it was rather confusing. I definitely liked the rebellious nature of the girls over time. I loathed the mother character. I do think this book may have done well as a series, but I am a series addict so that could just be personal preference.