Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Beta (Annex, #1)” as Want to Read:
Beta (Annex, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Beta (Annex #1)

3.56  ·  Rating Details ·  6,537 Ratings  ·  890 Reviews
Elysia is created in a laboratory, born as a sixteen-year-old girl, an empty vessel with no life experience to draw from. She is a Beta, an experimental model of a teenage clone. She was replicated from another teenage girl, who had to die in order for Elysia to exist.

Elysia's purpose is to serve the inhabitants of Demesne, an island paradise for the wealthiest people on
Hardcover, 331 pages
Published October 16th 2012 by Hyperion
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Beta, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Honey Hi Gabby,
I am also a HUGE dystopian fan, and I enjoyed this book, but I would classify it as a teen science fiction book. If it did have a few…more
Hi Gabby,
I am also a HUGE dystopian fan, and I enjoyed this book, but I would classify it as a teen science fiction book. If it did have a few inconsistencies, it was still an interesting topic, and her idea was very original, I have never heard of anything similar before. Make sure before finishing it, you are able to find the second book, because I can not find it for a decent price, and it ends with a cliff hangar.
Hope this helps,
Insurgent by Veronica RothCity of Lost Souls by Cassandra ClareThe Fault in Our Stars by John GreenPandemonium by Lauren OliverRapture by Lauren Kate
YA Novels of 2012
1,325 books — 10,618 voters
Finale by Becca FitzpatrickThe Lost Prince by Julie KagawaThe Mark of Athena by Rick RiordanThe Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle HodkinBreathe by Sarah Crossan
October 2012
79 books — 288 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jan 12, 2014 Megan rated it it was ok
I won’t mince words and as a result I am going to spoil this book a little. If you are afraid of spoilers, please don’t read on. Fair warning.

When a book uses rape as a plot point, especially when the character was initially a supporting and caring brother-like figure, I get pissed off. When this is compounded with the rape victim getting pregnant and those around her not allowing her to get an abortion because her child is too special, then that just makes me rage. BETA has this and more, which
Dec 31, 2013 Giselle rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc, own
While Beta has a fascinating premise of clones in a perfect world, there are a lot of elements in the plot that I found either unnecessary, or very off-putting. At first I thought I could overlook these qualms, but they kept piling up on top of one another until it toppled and became too much for my taste. The ending, however, almost brought this to a 3-stars as it actually caught me off guard for once. I would never have expected it--though this may not be the case for everyone--and it makes me ...more
This review is also available over at my blog.


Actual rating is 3.5 stars. This will be a long ass review, by the way, I'm just warning you right now.

This book didn't turn out to be as bad as I was expecting. In fact, most of the time I actually enjoyed myself while reading. Am I a little disappointed, though? Well, not really, because I had low expectations from the start. I'm pretty pleased that it wasn't as horrible as most of the reviews I've read made it seem.

In the wo
Mar 15, 2015 hayden marked it as wishlist
I would LOVE to read this on NetGalley . . .

. . . but apparently, Disney-Hyperion "isn't accepting blogger requests at this time."

It's okay, Rachel. I'll own your book . . . eventually.
Dec 04, 2013 Nafiza rated it it was amazing
The cover of this book is so amazingly beautiful that I spent a few minutes being creepy and caressing it. The satin finish of it complements the colours and the model is so incredibly beautiful and the cover merges so very fantastically with the content in the novel. I went into this book knowing that it was about clones and that’s about it. I have read other books by Cohn and liked them so I was reasonably confident that I would appreciate the writing if not love the story. I didn’t start the ...more
Giselle (Book Nerd Canada)
Elysia is the second teenage clone Beta, still with flaws she is sold to a prominent family on the perfect Utopian island Desmesne. Her goal is to be a perfect companion to her human family. But when she meets another teenage Beta, and she starts seeing her First's memories, she starts to question what is right for them and what is right for her.

Manufactured perfection in a little island called Demesne, I thought it sounded just perfect. But we all know that nothing is perfect. Everyone is beaut
Wendy Darling
Oh...dear. Review to come.
Seen at Scott Reads It!

**I would like to thank Disney-Hyperion for providing me an ARC on NetGalley.**
Beta is one of those books that came with alot of hype and publicity. I read many mixed reviews for Beta but I didn't let that stop me from reading it. Beta has a super interesting concept but I don't think it was executed well. This a book where there is an extremely slow paced plot where throughout the majority of the book nothing seems to happen. There was way too much dialogue and not nearl
Oct 19, 2012 Evie rated it really liked it
A provocative, intellectually stimulating and emotionally engaging tale of humanity, identity, ethics and free will, BETA is, in a word, fascinating. In this fun to read, absorbing and unique novel, Rachel Cohn addresses some interesting ethical issues about the pitfalls of cloning and bio-genetics. She introduces us to a great new heroine that, engineered to serve the wealthy residents of Demesne, is forced to either obediently follow all the rules or die. Disquieting, thrilling and haunting, ...more
Jan 06, 2013 Katy rated it really liked it
3.5 stars - Gotta love a sci-fi dystopian book with a cliffhanger.

This book wasn't what I was expecting - your typical "I'm a clone, and I'm not allowed to feel" type of book. Yes, that was what this book was about, but I hadn't realized that Elysia was purchased to serve as a member of a privileged family and a companion to her siblings and their friends.

I will say it took a while for me to get into the Book. Cohn uses a lot of description - which I have yet to decide if it is a good or a bad t
Jun 25, 2012 Bonnie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
Ready for a new heroine? Katsa, Katniss, and now Elysia, the clone. Water Wars have changed the earth, but the richest people have managed to create a special island, Demesne, with pure air, lovely violet water, and a population of clones to do all the work. Most of the clones are fully adult, but the doctor in charge is now experimenting with teen clones, still in the Beta stage. The governor's wife buys one for her family and is delighted with the beautiful, compliant, young woman. But Elysia ...more
Dec 16, 2012 Amy rated it did not like it
Shelves: arc, 2012-challenge
Extremely predictable for most points (about the secrets of different characters), so that was annoying... but what wasn't predictable at the end of the book then became major issues for me to give this story a bad rating.

Nov 17, 2016 Emily rated it did not like it
Clones have not suffered as badly as most other sci-fi/fantasy creations have in the recent field of YA literature. Cloning! How interesting is that? Not to mention that they’re (presumably) genetically altered clones created to be immune to the bliss-inducing skies of a tropical island. I bumped this novel to the top of my to-read list as soon as I added it and waited until it came in at the library.

I started reading.

This is an accurate depiction of my face at any given moment during that time:
Tabi Card
Jul 11, 2015 Tabi Card rated it did not like it
This was on of those was one of those impulse borrows. Neat looking cover, interesting plot on the inside cover...I thought, "Eh, what the heck?" and brought it home.

My mind needs to be bleached. And my eyes.

I am so glad I decided to start this one before all my other library books.
The story-line and idea was pretty original...and the writing wasn't half-bad either, but it's a tangled mess where the main plot points are all sexually related (view spoiler)
Patsy Frey-Davis
Oct 07, 2012 Patsy Frey-Davis rated it it was ok

After reading (and enjoying) many others by this author I came to my egalley of Beta with high expectations that the book utterly failed to live up to. While the world is interesting the character development felt poorly paced. This would have normally still earned 3 stars from me but for two major issues: a race of characters in the book that are genetically modified to be the "best elements of human kind" and are therefore utterly Aryan and worshiped by normal people for their beauty AND a na
Apr 09, 2012 Guadalupe marked it as books-that-i-need-to-read
Recommended to Guadalupe by: Goodreads
The cover is beautiful, but for me, the summary is fucking awesome!

Can't wait to read this!

yes gif tumblr Pictures, Images and Photos
Jul 26, 2012 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Elysia is a new beta, one of the first trial teenage clones. She is sold to the Bratton family to be a replacement for their daughter Astrid who moved away. Elysia is to play with her new "brother and sister" Ivan and Liesel. She must also call the woman who bought her "mother." Clones are made and sold to work on the island. They have different tattoos on their face according to their jobs. They have no feelings so the drugged air does not affect them and they will work hard. Demesne's island ...more
Beta is a shining example of an idea that was clearly just not thought through enough.

Its basic concept is one with obvious appeal: clones allow for an interesting exploration of ideas of personhood, and making them property of the uber-rich brings issues of class into the mix. This premise could have been a fascinating and philosophical one, but… instead it gets dragged down, reflection on the nature of humanity drowned out by romantic subplot.

Perhaps most important, though, is Cohn’s choice t
Jan 21, 2013 Lettersalad rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: auf-deutsch
Elysia ist ein Klon, eine Teenager-BETA, wie es sie zuvor noch nicht gegeben hat. Normalerweise werden auf der idyllischen Insel Demesne nur erwachsene Personen geklont. Ohne Seele, eigene Gefühle oder Bedürfnisse. Ihr Wissen stammt lediglich von einer Datenbank im Gehirn, welche die Klone jederzeit abrufen können.
Sie dienen den Menschen, ohne Fragen zu stellen. Elysia wird an die Frau des Governors von Demesne verkauft und muss in ihrem neuen, luxuriösen Zuhause fortan als Unterhaltung für die
Dec 14, 2015 Melliane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mon avis en Français

My English review

Après avoir lu de nombreux avis vouant les mérites de ce livre, j’étais vraiment curieuse d’en apprendre plus.

On découvre dans ce roman l’île de Demesne, une île très étrange et différente des autres. En effet, tout y a été modifié pour répondre aux multiples attentes des personnes qui peuvent se permettre de payer un séjour. Et pour cela, l’air même a été modifié pour être de meilleure qualité, c’est-à-dire possédant une grande teneur en oxygène, chose qui e
Jan 08, 2015 Sarah rated it it was amazing
The Good

The variety of topics addressed. What it means to be human, women's rights, coming-of-age, finding your own way, determining who you are as a person, technology ethics, rape and abortion--there are so many different interesting topics addressed in this book and they're all interwoven into the story so well, it's unbelievable.
The cloning process. To make a clone, the original person must die. Clones are then branded with two face tattoos: one side with a tattoo indicating they are a c
Oct 22, 2012 Liviania rated it really liked it
Elysia is a clone. A teenage Beta, to be exact. One of the first of her kind and thus likely to have several bugs. But unlike the other teenage Beta, she's absolutely gorgeous. Thus, she gets taken into a household fast and becomes a companion, replacing a daughter away at college.

Thus begins Rachel Cohn's foray into science fiction. Cohn might be known for her (masterful) contemporaries, but BETA doesn't read like she's stretching out of her comfort zone. Cohn feels familiar with science fictio
Nov 03, 2012 Greg rated it it was ok
It's a little futile to talk about YA dystopia novels, much like horror movies, procedural TV shows, romance novels, and tween pop. Each genre has its formula firmly in place and an audience who views formula not as laziness, but as a salve against an unpredictable world. There might be small tweaks to the formulas here and there and the occasional meta hat-tip, but by and large it's mostly the same ol' shit. So Beta was pretty predictable save the ending when (view spoiler) ...more
Aug 17, 2013 Kathylill rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: dystopian, young adult, romance
I so much enjoyed the story and characters and the world building. This is no run of the mill dystopian young adult romance. This novel actually had more chocolate flavor to it than plain vanilla.

What I liked was the slow development of characters and social interaction in this book. There is no insta love attraction but romance slowly emerges into the novel. I really enjoyed reading the unhurried and vivid description of the island and its inhabitants.

When I think about the romance and love i
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Originally reviewed on A Reader of Fictions.

Before I got to read this one, I saw a few non-flattering reviews roll in, so I was on my guard, prepared for another in a string of disappointing reads. Thankfully, I enjoyed Beta pretty much all the way through, although I am definitely immensely skeptical about where the series is heading.

Beta takes place on an island paradise, home to only the richest and most fashionable of people. These people are so rich that they have clones, programmed to be e
Aimee Meester
Oct 17, 2016 Aimee Meester added it
Shelves: hated, 2016
I tried to finish it, but I just...I can't. I can't even. So stupid.

*weeps softly*
Mar 19, 2013 Brina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Die Autorin Rachel Cohn war mir spätestens seit "Dash & Lilys Winterwunder", das sie zusammen mit David Levithan geschrieben hat, ein Begriff. Von daher war ich besonders gespannt, wie ich den Auftakt ihrer neuen Reihe "Beta" so finden werde. Leider konnte mich das Buch nicht so von sich überzeugen, wie ich es im Vorfeld erhofft habe.

Rachel Cohn hat mich bislang mit ihrem Schreibstil begeistern können, bei "Beta" war dies leider nicht der Fall. Ich weiß nicht, ob es am Plot direkt lag oder s
Sep 07, 2012 Eileen rated it it was ok
Check out more of my reviews at ***Singing and Reading in the Rain***!

As a serious sucker for a gorgeous cover, I fell for Beta; I'll be open about it. However, looks can deceive. I traded it with a friend, so I'm not too upset about not enjoying it that much, besides the fact that it was not an enjoyable read. In the end, Beta didn't live up to par.

In Beta, we were first introduced to Elysia and her first moments waking up as soon as expert scientists created her. She's a Beta, a test drive of
Jul 14, 2014 Jillyn rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: ya
Recommended to Jillyn by: Nicole
Shelves: blog, favorites
The island of Demesne is a utopia. Humans aren't bothered with trivial things like work, only luxury and leisure. Instead, the work is done by clones- servants cloned from the recently deceased. Void of souls and feelings, they are perfect for a life of servitude. Elysia is a Beta clone- one of the first few teenage clones in existence with a rampant threat of defects. On the island pf perfection, defects mean death. But Elysia isn't like other clones. She can taste food. She can remember ...more
Beta is a wonderful first installment of Rachel Cohn's new series. It's about a young clone named Elysia who was created to become a servant to residents on a euphoric island. Being a teenager, she's the first of her kind. Everyone else is in their 20's or older. A woman finds Elysia and buys her on the spot. She's told by her new owner -- "Mother" -- that she will be a member of the family, replacing her daughter that went away to school. While helping around the house and communicating with ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Review 1 4 Apr 03, 2015 12:08AM  
Spoonie Reads: BOTM August: Beta by Rachel Cohn 15 20 Aug 29, 2014 06:22PM  
What's The Name o...: SOLVED. Futuristic YA about a girl who is not suppose to have emotions [s] 3 26 Apr 19, 2014 05:08PM  
Should I finish this book? 8 39 Nov 22, 2013 05:32AM  
Can we just talk about the ending? 5 48 Nov 21, 2013 10:42PM  
Erudite Readers: Beta by Rachel Cohn 90 50 Dec 05, 2012 07:10PM  
Book swap 1 22 Sep 07, 2012 11:44AM  
  • Cybernetic
  • The Forsaken (The Forsaken, #1)
  • Glitch (Glitch, #1)
  • Level 2 (The Memory Chronicles, #1)
  • Ashes of Twilight (Ashes Trilogy, #1)
  • Skylark (Skylark, #1)
  • Chosen Ones (The Lost Souls, #1)
  • League of Strays
  • Breathe (Breathe, #1)
  • Erasing Time (Erasing Time, #1)
  • Hollow
  • Renegade (The Elysium Chronicles, #1)
  • 1.4 (Point 4, #2)
  • The Glimpse (The Glimpse, #1)
  • The Innocents (The Innocents, #1)
  • Through to You
  • False Memory (False Memory, #1)
  • Origin (Corpus, #1)
Rachel grew up in the D.C. area and graduated from Barnard College with a B.A. in Political Science. She has written many YA novels, including three that she cowrote with her friend and colleague David Levithan. She lives and writes (when she's not reading other people's books, organizing her music library or looking for the best cappuccino) in New York City.
More about Rachel Cohn...

Other Books in the Series

Annex (4 books)
  • Emergent (Annex, #2)
  • Untitled (Annex, #3)
  • Untitled (Annex, #4)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“What's a slut?" I ask him.
"A girl who puts out too easily."
"Puts out what?" I imagine Greer putting out dinner and don't understand what Iwan wouldn't like about that.
"Puts out, you know..." His face, already beet red from our run, turns a darker scarlet. "Sex."
I wonder where Greer puts the sex out.”
“Everyone on this island wants something kept quiet.
I want to roar”
More quotes…