Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Dvarca - Enter into the world of Dystopia - A Book by Madhav Mathur

I added Dvarca to my wishlist considering it as mythological fiction, but when I interviewed (link to interview postMadhav Mathur two months back on our blog I read few reviews and blurb. To my surprise, Dvarca was a dystopian book. I consider myself lucky that I got a copy of the book from the author in exchange for honest review. It was my first read in the dystopian genre, yes you heard me right I haven't read 1984 yet and I call myself an avid reader / bookworm. :)

Book blurb
ONE NATION | ONE RELIGION | ONE WAY OF LIFE Welcome to a land called Dvarca. At the turn of the 22nd century, the world is a mess of warring factions (surprise!). The powers-that-be have fought insanity with an equal and opposite insanity. India has been remodelled under a new bicolour flag, and a State religion called Navmarg. Anyone who does not belong, is a threat. Madhav Mathur's Dvarca is a dark and humorous satire that follows the life of an ordinary family, struggling to get by, in this totalitarian regime. Gandharva, is a patriotic and pious low-level bureaucrat at the Ministry of Finance and Salvation, working hard on his status and overdue promotion. His dutiful and curious wife, Jyoti, works at Dvarca Mills and witnesses a ghastly act of terror, leading to perilous flirtations with dissent. Their two little children, Nakul and Mira, are model students in their predestined streams, indoctrinated and well on their way to becoming faithful and productive citizens. The State religion and cutting-edge science combine to create new ways to make citizens safe, and to hound and hunt those who do not conform. Everything is 'perfect' in this controlled and policed system, until one fateful night, a man happens to break routine.
The 22nd century of Dvarca is 1970th USSR communism with 1400th-century Christianity. It is a country in the digital age where every citizen is a forced believer of state defined gods. The only freedom he gets in his life is the early death. Otherwise starting from his name (one from 10-20 selected Hindu names), his last name (block code), school, profession, life partner (I repeat life partner), kids (you are not allowed to have sex, govt send doctors to your wife for IMP) everything will be decided by government. With added help of digital aids, government controls everything starting from at what time you should wake up to what time to sleep. Sensors are placed in bedroom, hall, kitchen and bathroom. It is actually a black satire for those who want to support only one belief. The family of Gandharva was stuck in this state with each family member with different issues at hand. Their initial struggle was portrayed in this first part. I am eagerly waiting for the sequel.

If you check back cover of the book you will find the comment of Shovon Chowdhury "1984 meets the Meluha series. If you like either, you'll love this." My point is if you have read Meluha series or the first part of Ramchandra Series you would be able to relate this story with muscularity of religious or kingdom's dominion. When we try to bring "zero entropy" system, we ourselves add multiple problems. It feels so perfect when you read how people should be governed. At the macro level, things look wonderful, but at the micro level, things were so frustrating that people are forced to do almost everything. I can start a GD or Debate on the book, but writing about it is quite difficult. I have less space and many things are coming in mind to write about. Let me keep some points for next part as well. :)

The only thing I disliked about the book is the paper quality of pages. It has hampered my overall reading experience. Otherwise, a must read. Talking about rating:
  1. Cover Page : 4 / 5
  2. Concept : 4.5 / 5
  3. Characters : 4 / 5
  4. Storyline : 4.5 / 5
  5. Overall : 4.5 / 5
Book can be found at Amazon & Flipkart
Reviews from other readers can be found at Goodreads

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