The House of the Scorpion

by Nancy Farmer

Character Analysis

Throughout the book, Matt's physical appearance and behavior changed greatly. He started out as a little boy who was naive to what he was. For example, Mr. Alacran called him a "little beast" instead of a boy (23). He was referring to Matt's being a clone. Later, Matt became an actual human, just like every other teenage boy. For instance, Esperanza said "'you were a clone... But when the original dies, the copy takes his place,'" explaining to Matt that he was no longer considered a clone, but a human (366-367).

Throughout The House of the Scorpion Matt faced many conflicts. One such conflict was being discriminated against because he was a clone. This is shown by when Emilia stated "'That's disgusting. Clones aren't people'" (26). However, Matt finally overcame this when El Patron died and he met Esperanza. This is demonstrated by "' ... when the original dies, the copy takes his place... [which] means that you really are El Patron'" (367).


The author of The House of the Scorpion, Nancy Farmer, used characterization to develop the plot of the story throughout the novel. She expressed the differences in Matt's personality throughout his lifetime. She does this by splitting the book into sections of Matt's life in which he was different ages and displaying how much he had changed over the years. This develops the plot by helping the reader to see how different Matt is throughout his life.

Another way that the author develops the plot is through the use of setting. She uses setting to display how the main character, Matt, experienced the beauties of life. This is demonstrated by "Creosote bushes and paloverde trees framed a small, narrow valley, and in the center of this was a pool of water" which shows how Nancy Farmer used setting to show how Matt saw the world around him (36).


The novel, The House of the Scorpion, was excellent in many ways. One reason that the book was good was the way it was written. The author used many literary elements, such as repetition, to make the book more sophisticated. This made the book much more enjoyable, and for that reason I would recommend this book to anyone who needed a book to read.

However, there were also many ways in which the book was not satisfying. One reason that the book was not gratifying was that it was simply boring for most of the book. Until near the end of the book, there were not many suspenseful parts in the novel. This took away from the enjoyment of the book, and for this reason I would not recommend this to anybody.

The House of the Scorpions Movie Trailer