Vox - Christina Dalcher

Reading Challenge Category: Recommended by a friend

Official Blurb:

Silence can be deafening.
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 Thoughts:

My friend recommended this book to me last year, and up until now, I’ve just not had the time to read it. However, I’m in a real dystopian mood at the moment, so I made time!
It hooked me right from the beginning, the sheer terror at the thought of not being able to speak, read or write was all-encompassing. I just couldn’t imagine it, however with everyone wearing these face masks at the moment it felt a little too real, it is as if we are being gagged.
The entire concept of the book is sound, and I took a liking straight away to the author. Especially when I found out she was a linguist and having completed my MA in Linguistics a few years ago, I felt a sort of solidarity. The main protagonist is a neurolinguist, and it was great to see little nods to the linguistic field and references I understood. However, the technical science bits that come later are another story!
The helplessness of the situation that Jean and all her fellow women found herself in reminded me a lot of ‘The Choice’ by Claire Wade that I read earlier this year. It had the same dystopian anxiety and terror about it.
The ending of the book left a lot to be desired, however. I was utterly invested in the book, but then all of a sudden, I felt left out of what was happening. There were a lot of silent conversations between the characters, and I missed the nuances. I just didn’t know what was going on. I felt like I should, and therefore I was missing something. It all happened so fast, and I felt a bit whiplashed or as if I’d been asleep for a few chapters (which I hadn’t). So I was quite disappointed by the ending. I don’t think it was very well executed. It was like the author knew what was going on but didn’t portray it adequately to us, the reader.
Overall, I enjoyed the book, and if it hadn’t have been for the confusing ending, I would have given it five stars. However, it does only get four. This is the fastest I have read a book in a while, though. It did grip me and had a fantastic premise.

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by Christina Dalcher
Date Started
8th July 2020
Date Finished
9th July 2020
Buy Now on Amazon