PLOT: 4/5 CHARACTERS: 4/5 WRITING STYLE: 4/5 CLIMAX: 4/5 ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 4/5
Thoroughly enticing though chilling, exhilarating but whacky and hyperrealistic, yet deeply embedded in the realism of the mysterious nature of human existence in the universe, Master O is a futuristic novel with a twist.
It is a mix of futurism, thriller, and suspense with a plot that is based on seemingly innocent creatures who have taken up greater responsibility on their shoulders to set human history right. So, while this history and its mysteries unfold at a moderate pace, the plot turns and bends at varied junctures to churn our incidents and characters that will resonate with the Indian audience at multiple levels.
This has a lot to do with the politics of representation and representative politics that are significant to the contemporary Indian scenario.
In this sense, Master O is highly revolutionary and thrusts its points through a circumlocutory manner and in understated tones which only goes on to highlight the depth of thought that has gone into the making of this book.
This is also reflected in the book cover which comes with a look that will immediately strike a chord with readers who love sci-fi or futuristic novels, and are tech-savvy, but also with readers who have watched the Matrix trilogy.
The cover, surprisingly states in the subtitle of the novel that it is an epic of the future which is not to be taken as a loosely used term for the book balances well between the classical usage of the term and its modern implications in creating a whole new world of fiction that is at once eerie, fascinating, frightening and relatable.
It is perhaps this mix of emotions that creates a reading experience at par with writers like HG Wells and JK Rowling in terms of rattling the senses and uniqueness in being innovative. The storyline revolves around a group of species who are akin to elephants who live somewhere in the future and have stumbled upon the secret of time and time travelling.
This makes them meddle with time and enter and exit time zones, which gives them a sense of power and privilege of being able to control that which is not to be seen yet felt so deeply in everyone’s lives.
One of the elephants is under the notion that he is Buddha Vajradhara and takes it upon himself to fulfil his self-claimed destiny of bringing about radical changes in the world order that will affect the functioning of the world.
His target is the elite and powerful who throughout decades, times, and ages have gone away without accountability. These are also the same people who have a lot of influence over the masses like political leaders such as the Prime Minister, The Minister of Emotions, or a Television show host to name a few. Of these targeted characters is Master O who is a self-proclaimed Godman that the mutant Buddha Vajradhara wants to bring under his control and expose the ill practices of Master O.
This is the central conflict in the plot and Master O seems to be posed as the chief character and a mix of a hero and anti-hero, someone who is omnipotent of sorts and has many charms up his sleeves.
Most of all, he has the ability to learn the secrets of humankind and life in general. The major climax comes in the form of the villains who are known as the Ibharis. They are a breed of elephants who have higher intellect than humans but the major plot twist rests in the reason behind the need for elephants to take revenge on humans.
This is what builds up the suspense and takes the novel to a higher dimension with a fantastic writing style. The vocabulary is on point, the descriptions are vivid and the ideas are highly innovative.
The only drawback is that there are too many characters scattered throughout the novel and it calls for an attentive though exciting reading session.
At 243 pages, the book is moderately lengthy and calls to be devoured in sittings.
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