Book Review: Dvarca by Madhav Mathur

Book Name: Dvarca

Author’s Name:Madhav Mathur

Rating: 3.5/5

Publisher: Fingerprint

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 bicolor 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 .

Book Review: Dvarca is a well researched work and Madhav is a good writer. He has managed to spin a good yarn based on contemporary lives but takes inspiration from a mythological theme. Madhav lends Dvarca a freshness and coupled with intricate characters, it comes across as a wonderful book.

The plot is relatively simple and could have been built better but Madhav’s superior narrative skills and the book’s strong characters never let the reader down. The political theme has been captured with finesse and the dash of humour also helps.

The only downside is that this could have been a great book, had it been presented and worked upon by a more competitive team. The writer and the plot have tons of potential but it doesn’t live up to the hype it builds. I hope Madhav will surprise us with his next work.

The book will appeal to both casual and voracious readers; there is something for anybody and it is open to many interpretations. The dystopian society built by Madhav is multi-layered and this is one of the highlights of Dvarca for it can be perceived and interpreted in so many ways- hallmark of a great writer!

Read this book if you are looking for something out of the ordinary.



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