Set in the near future, VOX by
Christina Dalcher is a provocative thriller, exploring the
language, and what happens when women's voices are literally
silenced. After the election of a conservative president,
supported and influenced by the religious right, American women
suddenly live in a world where they are required to wear
that count how many words they say, and limit them to 100
day, sending shocks that grow in strength the higher they go
limit. They can't have jobs, their bank accounts are
emptied, and they
have little to no rights beyond what their husbands or
fathers will allow
them. Dr. Jean McClellan, a former sociolinguist, mother of
married to a government scientist, struggles in her new
teenage son appears to be aligning himself under the new
ideals of male superiority, and her five-year-old daughter
has become a
shell of her former self, terrified of what will happen to
her if she goes
over 100 words. And her husband, Patrick, would rather turn
a blind eye
to the injustice surrounding them, instead of standing up
for what is
Jean is given an opportunity to work again when the president's
brother has an accident and his brain's language center is
Before she was forbidden to work, Jean was developing a cure
very ailment. Back in a lab with her colleagues, including
lover Lorenzo, Jean begins to feel normal again... but that
only lasts for
so long. With pressure from the government to create a brain
help the president's brother, her son's being brainwashed in
daughter winning an award for speaking the least, Jean is
and has no idea who she can trust...
A thought-provoking thriller, VOX
by Christina Dalcher is an intriguing read for anyone
looking to fill The
Handmaid's Tale shaped hole in their life. Clearly
influenced by the
feminist classic, VOX is a
thoughtful novel with a powerful message. Jean is frustrated,
overwhelmed, and deeply concerned with the reality she lives
wonders how it all happened, and how anyone could have
actually let it
happen. The set up of this novel really works and will keep
engaged and invested to read to the end. The climax and
resolution of the book were somewhat disappointing; not in the
ultimate ending, but in the sequence of events and rushed
denouement. I did find that I cared about the characters,
and wanted to
find out how the book would end. The beginning was
but ultimately I was not totally satisfied with the ending.
Dalcher is a talented writer, and her background in
linguistics is proudly
on display throughout. This book will definitely get people
particularly during the current political climate.
Set in an America where half the population has been
silenced, VOX is the harrowing, unforgettable story of what
one woman will do to protect herself and her daughter.
On the day the government decrees that women are no longer
allowed more than 100 words daily, Dr. Jean McClellan is in
denial--this can't happen here. Not in America. Not to her.
This is just the beginning.
Soon women can no longer hold jobs. Girls are no longer
taught to read or write. Females no longer have a voice.
Before, the average person spoke sixteen thousand words a
day, but now women only have one hundred to make themselves
But this is not the end.
For herself, her daughter, and every woman silenced, Jean
will reclaim her voice.