VOX is, without doubt, the most chilling, frightening and believable book that I have ever read!
There is an old saying that truth is stranger than fiction, and this book certainly mirrors that. On sale from August 29, VOX by Christina Dalcher is set in a fictionalised world that bears a great resemblance to some of America’s current realities.
The story is set in the US and follows the rise of an ultra-conservative, despot president and his administration whose sole aim is to make America “great again”. He and his cabinet of 11 men aim to take their country back to the 1950s, when men were men and women knew their places.
On being elected his first act is to ban all 70 million women from the workforce and enforce them to return to home duties, gardening, cooking and raising children. Only men can hold any job, only men can vote, women and girls can no longer hold passports, own bank accounts and all schools become gender based. Only boys are entitled to an education, girls only learn cooking, sewing, household management and, strangely, basic mathematics.
The borders are closed and no one is permitted to leave the country. A whopping great wall is erected along the southern border. Sound familiar?
The most terrifying scenario is the submissive and draconian action taken against the women and girls of the country with the sudden introduction of the dreaded “bracelet”. This piece of torture is a metal bracelet applied to every female from the age of 3 months.
Its sole purpose is to limit speech to a mere 100 words a day. Should you exceed that amount then an electric shock of 1,000 volts is promptly administered.
Adultery and premarital sex are punished by banishment to slave type camps, as is any form of non-heterosexual activity.
It will take a very brave group of scientists to break the system and bring down the administration.
This is perhaps the most provocative and disturbing book that I have ever read, more so bearing in mind the current state of affairs in the US. Like the current position, the storyline in VOX starts in the Bible Belt and swiftly spreads to the rest of the country. Is it really such a great stretch to fear something similar happening within the next three to eight years?
VOX is enough to scare the Stars and Stripes off the flagpole. God help us all if this book is in any way prophetic.
This is Christina Dalcher’s debut novel and if this is how she writes, I for one look forward to many more.
VOX by Christina Dalcher is another great publication by HQ Fiction and is available in printed and digital editions.