16 November, 2017

#BookReview :: Radius 200 by Veena Nagpal

What if a nuclear powered neighboring nation was to ‘steal’ an entire river from under our eyes?
What if a top-ranking Indian General was to take a unilateral decision to strike back, thereby triggering a cataclysmic reaction? 
What if, in the aftermath of the nuclear attack, India was left with a devastated Exclusion Zone, 200 kilometers in radius?
And what if your love was stranded inside the Exclusion Zone…

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Radius 200 is a story that incorporates love and war together set in a not so distant future.

Imagine a not too distant future where people are disfigured and have to scavenge for their livelihood. Then imagine a situation in that setting where a country decides to ‘steal’ a whole river from their neighboring country and a high ranking military personnel of the said neighboring country decides to take matters into his own hands and fight back… it could lead to war. And if both the countries have nuclear power then that war could be devastating. Now imagine an exclusion zone as a result of the aforementioned situation and your beloved stuck in that exclusion zone! Would you forget him, or would you move heaven and earth to find him?

The book makes a mark on two levels. First, the setting where our natural resources have been depleted and people have resorted to rationing water and foraging lizards and snakes for food. It may seem fantastical, but in a way, it made a lot of sense to me. The way we are exhausting our natural resources, that day may come sooner rather than later. Second was the effect of war on people and the varied human emotions and reactions revolving it. I certainly enjoyed these aspects of the book. Coming to the romance aspect of the book, I wasn’t really convinced of the two relationships involved in the storyline as I didn’t ‘feel’ any real connection between the characters. Which in turn made the intimate scenes feel forced and disjointed. A similar experience with the characters as well… While the character of Kyra felt very clear and well developed; the character development fell short for Om and Arjun. In the end the author’s lucid language and narrative style made it easy to get into the book and turn its pages till the end. 

Overall, I feel that the plot had good potential but just fell a little short of being a full-blown entertainer. 

Review Copy received from the Author