The Life Of A Clone

The House Of the Scorpion

Character vs Society

"The servants drew away from him as if he was something unclean, and Steven and Emilia turned the other way if they saw him coming."-Matt, pg. 65

The clone of Matteo Alacran, also known as Matt, was hated by almost all who knew he was a clone. People saw him as an animal, a beast, or livestock. Not something to be kept in a house, or given education, most certainly not given all the attention of El Patron (Matteo Alacran). Some people hated him more than others:

" I wanted to kill that abomination El Patron keeps at his heels."-Felicia, pg.163

While some people were his friends, and even loved him:

"I love you, too,"-Maria to Matt, pg. 223

But, above all, life as a clone, is you against the world.

The Synopsis of Matt's Early Life

Matteo Alacran

was the Drug Lord of a land known as Opium, between the USA and Aztlan (formerly known as Mexico). He created his eighth clone, another Matteo Alacran. Because of a law, clones are known as livestock. This gives their creators the full ability to use a clone's organs for transplants, to extend one's own life. Matt grew up, unsuspecting. His early childhood was pretty normal, except for the fact that he didn't have a "Mama" and "Papa", only Celia. He had no idea what was coming for him if El Patron's heart failed, and only put two and two together when it did fail. Luckily, Celia (his caretaker) had enough foresight to poison Matt with arsenic. It wasn't enough to kill him, but it made it so it would kill El Patron if he attempted to steal Matt's heart. El Patron died shortly, and Mr. Alacran (El Patron's great grandson) ordered Matt to be "put to sleep". But, instead of killing him, his former bodyguard, Tam Lin, gave him an chance. A chance to run across the border to Aztlan. He went to Aztlan to find Maria, only to fall into the hands of the Keepers, who were a corrupt system of Aztlan. Eventually, he escaped the Keepers with the help of some new friends, and found Maria. He then found out that Opium was under a lock-down, and Maria's mother wanted to use his DNA, as El Patron's signature overrides everything, to get into Opium. Their plan works, and Matt goes back, after months, to Opium only to discover that almost everyone was dead. At El Patron's wake, they had drunken wine the was designed to kill them. Only a few servants, such a Celia, had survived. And our story ends with the new Matteo Alacran figuring out what to do with his new drug empire.

Nancy Farmer

Nancy Farmer has written over seven books, and she lives with her family in California. For House of the Scorpion, she has won a Newberry Honor, a National Book Award, and the Printz award.