Perfect Copy: The Second Creation

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Perfect Copy: The second creation is a youth novel by Andreas Eschbach . The novel was published by Arena in 2002 . He takes on the question of human cloning and the associated consequences for those affected and their families.


The story is told from the perspective of the young person Wolfgang Wedeberg, who lives in a small town in the Black Forest, goes to high school there and has played the cello every day since early childhood. His father, chief physician at a cancer clinic in the Black Forest, considers him to be an exceptional talent who must be encouraged under all circumstances. The mother is a former singer who now works as a hobby painter.

However, Wolfgang is not convinced of his talent to that extent, but rather sees the expectations of him as a burden that unsettles him and determines his life from outside. His math teacher also thinks he's a math talent and asks him to take part in a math competition. As a result, the pressure increases, but on this occasion he gets to know Svenja from the parallel class. This is also a participant in the competition.

A journalist's research in a tabloid that points to Wolfgang as the first cloned person causes excitement. Before Wolfgang's father was born, he was in contact with a doctor in Cuba who pretended to have cloned a person. The search for this clone has been going on ever since. The publication leads to different reactions in school and a leave of absence for Wolfgang from school in order to get out of the public's line of fire.

During this time Wolfgang discovers a photo that shows him with an elderly gentleman he does not know and that leads to further questions. However, the suspicion expressed in the newspaper lapsed shortly afterwards, as DNA analyzes did not reveal a complete genetic identity of father and son.

Together with Svenja, Wolfgang developed the idea of ​​having his talent checked by a cello expert. Svenja arranges an appointment with an appropriate professor in Berlin. Wolfgang's father doesn't want to know anything about his relationship with Svenja, he cannot accept any self-doubts either and puts Wolfgang under increased pressure to exercise and house arrest. With the help of a friend, a kidnapping is faked that enables Wolfgang and Svenja to travel to Berlin, where they are received by the professor.

In the cello professor, Wolfgang recognizes the gentleman in the enigmatic photo, but the boy on it is not Wolfgang, but his brother Johannes, whom he looks very similar to. He is thus the clone of his deceased brother and not his father.


  • Arena Taschenbuch 2002, 245 pages, ISBN 978-3-401-02384-7 (also translations into Japanese, Czech, French and Russian)

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