Book Review : Chosen Spirits

Book Review : Chosen Spirits

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Our country is now in a place where lines are blurred between right and wrong. It is now imperative that we take a stand and more importantly, realize what our morals expect us to do. Will we do right? Will we bungle it up to a point of no return? Who can tell? But what we can do is pull up an estimate of the future. And Samit Basu, in his latest book, Chosen Spiritsgives us a best case scenario of what could be in store for us if we keep going the way we are.

What the Book is About:

Chosen Spirits is set in the future, with advanced technology playing a huge role in the story  while keeping the basics at what we know and relate to. And to see these basics as relevant in a futuristic scenario as in today’s times is sad, which is more of a cry for change than anything else.

Joey is a Reality Controller,  who is the best in her field and helps Indi with his Flow. A Flow is something like a YouTube Live where fans of the Flower can watch them go through their day or make their way through certain events. They are scripted, a lot of thought going into each Flow, taking into account the current political and religious situations in the country.

When she saves an old friend, Rudra, by offering him a job, little does she know the series of events that she has unwittingly accelerated. These events threatens Joey’s job and she has to decide what she wants to do. Will she give up control? Will she change paths? Will she be able to face the dangers that are headed her way? Or will her impulsive decision to save Rudra cost her everything? 

What I Liked:

Chosen Spirits is a brave story, something we need to read in these times and realize what we are about to do to ourselves so that we take immediate action. Our future stares us in the face and mocks us, and this book tells us exactly what’s about to happen if we just stand by and don’t do anything about the issues plaguing our country today.

Samit Basu pulls no punches as he references Shaheen Bagh, the number of mob lynchings across the country, rapes, victim blaming, religious fanaticism, casteism, classism, racism, misogyny, and so much more. He exposes even further the glaring cracks in society and in our national fabric. He gathers together the broken pieces of thoughts and tradition that are heaped in a wall so high, it doesn’t even let people see the tail of the whimpering lion called ‘progress’, leave alone letting them take a step forward.

Chosen Spirits is an ode to all those people who have fought, are fighting, and will always fight for what is right. It also tells us, in no uncertain terms, that you are a chosen spirit as long as you do the right thing. You just have to catch the undertones of the story.

What I Didn’t Like:

The book’s only two faults are: 

  • It starts off too slow, taking a long time to allow the reader to get into the story, what with the information dump going on in the first 80-odd pages.
  • It ends rather abruptly, like jumping off a cliff and never finding land or water. 

Final Verdict:

Chosen Spirits is a call to the entirety of India, to open our eyes and see the present, so that we can prevent a horrific future. For the devil is in the details, and as you read this book, this futuristic story, you’ll see why the call is actually an ear-splitting scream for help.

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