Friday 29 January 2021

Book Review - Vox


Title: Vox

Author: Christina Dalcher 

Publisher: HQ 

Release Date: 7 Mar. 2019 

ISBN-13: 978-0008300678



Jean McClellan spends her time in almost complete silence, limited to just one hundred words a day. Any more, and a thousand volts of electricity will course through her veins.
Now the new government is in power, everything has changed. But only if you’re a woman.
Almost overnight, bank accounts are frozen, passports are taken away and seventy million women lose their jobs. Even more terrifyingly, young girls are no longer taught to read or write.
For herself, her daughter, and for every woman silenced, Jean will reclaim her voice. This is only the beginning…


My Review

I am a massive fan of Dystopian fiction, it's probably my favourite genre, so when I heard about this book I was definitely interested. A colleague at work was reading it and recommended I should try it, she warned me that it 'wasn't amazing, but rather interesting'. I then saw it in the 3 for £5 books in my local discount book shop so I grabbed a copy and it's been on my shelf for about a year.

I wanted a fairly quick read that was a stand alone novel, so I picked this one out. Jean used to be a Neuroscientist, enjoyed going out with friends and has a family - a husband and four kids. Now she is forced to revert back to being the 'traditional' housewife - cooking, cleaning and shopping. There is no need for her to read or write, no need to have opinions and certainly no need to speak. With the new government, women have lost all their rights, had their bank accounts frozen, their passports destroyed and been fitted with bracelets that limit them to 100 words a day - if they go over this they will receive a thousand jolts of electricity. Jean knows it is not right and she is starting to resent her husband and oldest son, and the position she is forced into. 

Then suddenly the government realise they need Jean's help - the presidents brother has had an accident and is suffering from a type of brain damage. If Jean agrees to help she will have her bracelet removed, received a sum of money (paid to her husband though of course). But Jean doesn't trust them and only reluctantly agrees after negotiating for her daughter's bracelet to be removed too, but once she is back in the lab - she realises that the government want something a lot more sinister from them, and that she will not ever truly be free unless the rules change. 

There are a lot of similarities between this and Handmaid's Tale, and I think they actually elude to it at one point in the book. But I still enjoyed it as a book in it's own right - the actual dystopian world is quite interesting - though I'm not sure exactly how this would have ever come about, it all seemed quite radical. I'm sure there would have been more of an uproar from people. The book was a bit too political in places for me and a lot of religious blame, that is at times uncomfortable. 

Jean is an ok character, her emotions and feelings are real enough to make you feel for her, she can be very naive at times and she spends a lot of time regretting what she hasn't done and what she should have done. But i felt invested enough in her story. The surrounding characters were there to support her story well enough but I didn't really care about them that much.

I read this in two sittings, and was interested to see how it would all pan out. The ending seemed a bit rushed and I wanted some more details, but I wasn't blown away. This book was interesting enough to read but I don't think I would ever read it again. 


My Rating



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