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Swans and Klons

2.82  ·  Rating details ·  124 ratings  ·  39 reviews
What does it take to survive in a world built on lies?

Sixteen-year-old Rubric loves her pampered life in the Academy dormitory. She’s dating Salmon Jo, a brilliant and unpredictable girl. In their all-female world, non-human slaves called Klons do all the work. But when Rubric and Salmon Jo break into the laboratory where human and Klon babies are grown in vats, they uncov
Paperback, 192 pages
Published May 14th 2013 by Bold Strokes Books (first published May 13th 2013)
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Average rating 2.82  · 
Rating details
 ·  124 ratings  ·  39 reviews

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Apr 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Dystopian fans, LGBT fans
Shelves: requested, ebook
In the future of the planet Earth, there is no longer a need for males. No longer are women subjected to the disgusting man creatures, and they don't have to go through the awful, painful, barbaric ritual of child birth. There are only women, chosen to be descendants of 300 superior females, and only from those 300. And then there are the Klons- the lesser minded, not-quite-humans that serve the Society and do the jobs that no one else wants to, like cleaning and driving. Light on rules and fair ...more
Lizzy Lessard
Jul 10, 2013 rated it did not like it
SWANS & KLONS is quite possibly the most infuriating book I’ve ever read. Rubric dodges impossible situations on Forest Gump luck. The narrator consistently points out reasons for the girls’ plans (lack of plans) not to succeed and yet by sheer stupidity of the other characters, they get what they want accomplished.

Grown up with everything done for her by Klons, Rubric acted just like Paris Hilton in the television series A SIMPLE LIFE. She acts like a spoiled brat and gets away with constant ta
Jennifer Lavoie
Imagine a world where men do not exist. Women not only run society, but they ARE society. As in the only members. In the distant future, male children are born with something wrong with them that ultimately causes them to become what the women call "Cretinous Males." They are physically and mentally weaker to a large degree, making them giant children essentially. In this future society, women do not even give birth anymore. All children are created and raised in giant tubes until they are able ...more
Apr 08, 2013 rated it it was ok
“At the final moment, Doctors saved humanity by discovering how to create human life without the animalistic and outdated method of sexual reproduction. The Doctors chose three hundred specimens of exquisite womanhood to be the templates for all future generations to come. And thus Society was born, and in this great nation called Society we have three hundred Jeepie Types.”
From Swans & Klons by Nora Olsen

When I was wandering around NetGalley looking for something to read I stumbled upon this bo
Apr 01, 2013 rated it liked it
First, the horribly truncated summary: In the future, men devolve into apes and women enslave each other.

For some, the future is closer than this book gives credit.

I was given a copy of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Netgalley is generous and benevolent in waiting for me to perform, and for that, I thank them.

As it turns out, dystopia is the new paranormal romance. We like our dystopia these days, especially when the price of gas goes up. What’s a sparkley vampire
May 17, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: novel, queer, ya, scifi
My full thoughts on this title can be found at bisexual-books. ...more
Sep 10, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi, lgbtqcsikr
Pretty awful. I couldn't put it down, but yeah, it had few redeeming factors.
Emily Antin
Mar 31, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Mar 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars I enjoyed the concept of this book and morality behind it. While there were a few character and plot flaws it was certainly entertaining enough to be enjoyable!
May 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
(nb: I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley)

Rubric and Salmon Jo have a seemingly idyllic life. They are students at a top academy. They are ready to begin working with their mentors, and they have each other.

Rubric begins training with a noted artist, while Salmon Jo starts work in The Hatchery, the place where new babies are decanted.

Yes, decanted. Not "born." Babies in this world are poured out of a tank when gestation is complete.

I should probably mention, there are no
Jul 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Originally Reviewed At: Mother/Gamer/Writer
Review Source: NetGalley
Rating: 3 out of 5 Controllers
Reviewer: Ariel

First of all, I love Dystopian literature, so I was really excited to read Swans & Klons by Nora Olsen. The story follows Rubric and her girlfriend, Salmon Jo, through a futuristic society (called Society) where men are extinct and there are 300 genetic types of women, 300 “Jeepie Types”. Young girls are raised in dormitories and when the humans are 16, they get partnered with an adult
Jul 17, 2013 rated it did not like it
UPDATE: In 2014 I reviewed this book and gave it 4 stars. I was new to the queer community and my own queer identities, and I was enthusiastic to discover a book where all the women were default queer, and the entire society was made up of lesbians.

Four years later, I can see a LOT of problems with this book. It doesn't mention or allow for trans, intersex, or nonbinary characters, since the worldbuilding sharply divides the population into male and female based on their apparent biological sex.
I read the synopsis, and I fell in love. My two favourite genres - LGBT and dystopian - mixed together; it was practically my idea of heaven. However, the execution wasn't quite what I expected.

The concept was fabulous, I can't fault it at all - living in a dystopian Earth, teenage girls have been brought up in a society where only women exist. Men have long been extinct, and to reproduce and keep the population at a steady level, they clone embryos. This means that there are "Jeepie Similars" a
Jessica Strider
May 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Pros: interesting premise, great characters, positive depictions of lesbian relationships, positive depictions of handicapped, thought provoking, doesn't provide easy answers, great use of linguistical shifts

Cons: underdeveloped world-building, less development than the story deserved

For Parents: no sex but there is kissing, swearing done in German, minor violence

After a mysterious disease turned all men into 'Cretinous Males' with degenerative disorders, humanity chose 300 specimens of female p
Heather A
I received a copy from Netgalley.

The premise of this book sounded really good. And at first it was, I quite liked the idea of an all female futuristic society, and there was some logical explanation as to how the female society is divided and where they came from. The basic purpose of the humans seems to be live a rich and full live, and all the manual works and dull jobs are done by what appear to be genetically engineered slaves called Klons,

Females grow up at an academy and when they are sixt
Apr 17, 2013 rated it liked it
Quick and dirty summary: Two girlfriends live in a women-only society (men died out because of a genetic disease linked to the Y chromosome) where genetically modified clones wait on them hand and foot. They figure out that their society is corrupt and run away, freeing some of the clones in the process.

I actually liked this book. I found the idea of the story to be interesting, so I was able to overlook a lot of the major flaws, and there were some things that I really liked. Oddly, the things
Jul 29, 2013 rated it it was ok
Set in a future dystopian society where men have degraded into a useless non-intelligent state, women run the Society that sixteen year old Rubric lives in and there are no males at all except for the ones who live outside of the wall in the Land of the Barbarous Ones. Women are either human or Klons, who have been "genetically modified" to be stronger and more hard working so that they can be slaves. When Salmon Jo, Rubric's schatzie, which is a German word that means sweetheart - the book uses ...more
Nov 29, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2016-books
Holy CRAP this was an awful book. I wish I could mark this as "un-read" and erase it from my memory.

There are spoilers below but this book isn't even worth reading so don't bother.

The premise sounds pretty good: In the future, only women exist and they have 'klons' to do all their work for them. But then our wonderful heroine and her girlfriend uncover a 'shocking' secret that changes their world forever!

Before I read this book, I thought it couldn't possibly be that klons are actually really h
Iwetta Seruga
Wow. I don't know why I've wanted to read it, when I found out that it exists. I guess after-our-world society with lesbians made it interesting.

Beware; spoilers.

Sadly I'm disappointed to not end, and I'm only on page 57. I cant find any kind of sympathy for the lead character, Rubric. Not one bit. She's annoying, and I cant hear the words; thicko, veruckt (verrückt actually, in German, just like Schatzie) or hollyhock. It's awfully annoying, Rubcric's responses are...unintelligent and snotty.
Feb 27, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
Swans and Klons was a quick read, but not in a very good way: the entire book and its characters were very shallow, its world underdeveloped, its ending an extremely rushed disappointment. None of the characters felt likeable or even relatable, other than perhaps Dream, who had woefully little page-time. I couldn't connect emotionally at all with the main character, Rubric, and the supposed depth of her relationship with Salmon Jo involved entirely too much telling and too little showing. Also f ...more
Alex Diaz
Jan 21, 2014 rated it liked it
As with most things, the description of this book was ten times more exciting than the actual book. A Dystopian future populated by only women (who are therefore lesbians by default) should be the perfect setting for a sci-fi/gay fic romp, but the premise is somewhat lessened, reserved, by dint of it being a novel for Young Adults. The romantic scenes are downplayed and tasteful, which is refreshing, but the advent of the "Cretinous Males" (all men in this dystopian future developed a mitochondr ...more
Apr 15, 2013 rated it liked it

This book is labeled as a GLBT novel, the only reason it has that label is because there are no men in this story. Women fall in love with women. GLBT is not really the theme. This is a YA dystopia.

Fantastic idea, The turning point was interesting, albeit not surprising. The last few pages were the best part of this novel.

That being said, this novel was lacking some raw emotions. I really didn't feel the characters love or fear. The main character went from "happy-to-paint", to "Must-free-a
Julie (Bookish.Intoxication)
I recieved this novel from NetGalley.

This novel was quick and easy to read, it was enjoyable and engaging. The characters are multi-dimesnional and relateable. This dystopian novel is so different from the other cliche dystopian Young Adult novels in print today and that is a relief, it is a breath of fresh air and makes it easier to read, easier to accept and enjoy.

The issues discussed and faced by these two teenage girls, the protagonists are ones that can be seen in each society and country i
Jun 04, 2014 rated it liked it
Young author writing for LBGT teens I think. Good concept in the story. Delivery shows youth. But I kept reading because, A. there's very few stories out there that capture lives of LBGT other than the erotic genre and this fact is sad, B. I'm a sucker for any storyline I've never heard before, no matter the level of writing, and C. I think this author is going to get better and better with each new project. Besides, who am I to judge - I still haven't published anything other than a blog yet. Y ...more
Nichole Dawn Romero
This book was a quick easy read. However it was not very good. the plot and ideas were new...but it was rather sexist. It focused on the idea of females ruling the world, and children being grown in vats, it also focused a lot on males being disgusting and inapt. The idea also needed farther development. It started out good but as the story went on t didn't seem to really go anywhere. There was something happening of course, but it didn't seem to reach a really good climax and conclusion. All in ...more
Mieke Mcbride
Dec 10, 2013 rated it it was ok
In the future there are no longer any men, so women are created in the lab as two classes-- the swans and the klons. The klons are genetically inferior to the swans, and so exist as a slave/servant class, while the swans are sorted into various occupations and positions based on the genetic material they are created from. Also because there are no men around, the women are all functionally lesbian. I enjoyed the world building here, but the story fell very very flat. It centers around two girls ...more
Dec 16, 2013 rated it liked it
Slate described this as one of "19 great books [of 2013] you never heard about—but should’ve." Maybe. I love all of the genres that this crosses (i.e., sci fi/fantasy, dystopias, LGBT), but the ideas--and I read sci fi/fantasy for the new frames for seeing world--didn't surprise me or make me think. Maybe if I'd read this as a teen, when I was really into dystopian novels, but now this novel seemed flat and I think I would have thought as much at 16.

Nonetheless, Swans and Klons was a fun read a
Dec 03, 2013 rated it it was ok
This was a YA novel that could have been stronger if it had been targeted to adults. The plot was a bit superficial at times and could have used a lot more developing. I think the target audience also toned down the implications, making it much less disturbing than it should have been.
On a positive note, this was one of the healthiest teen romances I have read and represented a real young relationship, not the abusive stereotypes so popular today.
Sylvia McIvers
Have everything you ever wanted but not satisfied with your life?
You must be a 1% swan.

Looking for something to do with your boring life?
Join your best buddy in the baby factory (not the hospital, the factory) and make an astonishing discover!

The Klons (slaves) are real people, too! shocker. Then scramble around with your best buddy and flounder through an adventure with no plan, no skill, and no real vision of success.
Jenni Frencham
Wow. A dystopian novel based on a planet populated almost entirely by women. Crazy stuff. Similar to Jonas in Lois Lowry's Giver, the main character in this book begins to realize that all is not as it seems and that her world has been very sheltered. A fascinating story, I am looking forward to more from this author.
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Shut Up & Read: Review & Giveaway - SWANS AND KLONS 1 5 May 09, 2013 07:24AM  

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Nora Olsen's debut novel, The End: Five Queer Kids Save The World, was published by Prizm Books in December 2010. It's the story of five LGBT teens who must travel through time to avert a nuclear war. Her second novel, Swans & Klons, was published Bold Strokes Books' Soliloquy imprint in May 2013 and is a dystopian YA novel about two girls who fall in love as they join the struggle to free enslave ...more

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