The Idea Behind Dystopian Novel – The Vatican Games by Alejandra Guibert
I wanted to write a novel that would appeal to a wide readership because my writing is usually more inward-looking, rather than action orientated. I found that I could do both in this book.
I had been aware for some time that the world was on the brink of big changes. I was reading then Cosmos & Psyche by Richard Tarnas who inspired me with his idea that “world views create worlds”. The understanding that we do have indisputable control over our future was very strong; that never in the history of humanity have we had so much power to save or destroy that same future. The question that came to mind was ‘What could the consequences be if we didn’t use this power to save it?’ This book tries to imagine our near future and to answer this question.
Since The Vatican Games was released on 30th January, a few readers have made the disturbing link between the apocalyptic beginning of the book and the coronavirus outbreak, but the novel is more than an eerie story with uncanny resemblance to the present virus challenges. Whilst offering twists and turns that can take your breath away, the book brings up topics and ideas about politics, technology, war, the planet and human behaviour, building up to a thrilling finale.
While we can shape our destiny like no other species, The Vatican Games proposes a post-apocalyptic world, based on current trends and poses questions of what it is to be human in a technological age. I think the characters in the book show how much power we have individually but also how we can be manipulated collectively if we allow it to happen.
Most of my research was done through the press, articles on current affairs, some non-fiction books, and reading about modern politics and war conflicts. Other than that, it was not difficult to imagine a world a few decades ahead. It could easily go down that road!