Book Review: Fluence by Stephen Oram

  • ISIN: 978-1781323632
  • Genre: Contemporary/ Dystopian Fiction
  • Publishers: SilverWood Books Ltd
  • Price: Rs. 1597.70/- (I got this book from b00k r3vi3w for a review)

It’s the week before the annual Pay Day when strata positions are decided by the controlling corporations. The social media feed is frenetic with people trying to boost their influence rating while those above the strata and those who’ve opted out pursue their own manipulative goals.

Amber is ambitious. Martin is burnt out by years of struggling. She cheats to get what she wants while he barely clings on to what he has.

Set in a speculative near-future London, Fluence is a satirical story of aspiration and desperation and of power seen and unseen. It’s a story of control and consequence. It’s the story of the extremes to which Amber and Martin are prepared to go in these last ten thousand minutes before Pay Day.

Behind the book

About the author

Stephen Oram lives in Fitzrovia, London. As a teenager he was heavily influenced by the ethos of punk. In his early twenties he embraced the squatter scene and then joined a religious cult, briefly. He did some computer stuff in what became London's silicon roundabout and is now a civil servant with a gentle attraction to anarchism. His fascination with exploring our darker places through near-future fiction prompted him to imagine alternative worlds and then write about them. You can find more about him and his writing on my website

Me thinks

This book was a read that left me spellbound in every possible manner. In short if I had to describe this book it would be  - "This book is our future envisaged!"

Set in London this story talks about a society which is divided in a class structure based on our social media influences. Every year on a particular day everyone is assessed and given a colour. Called the Pay Day in the book the white is the lowest of the colour and red the highest in terms of ranking.  You will find people battling in the social media to create more influence and thereby able to step up higher in the society. 

With a flawless narration, the author takes you on a ride in a futuristic London with very real characters brought to life in his description. Just like our corporate worlds here too you will find people who are willing to do anything to rise the levels and get the red colours while there are few who are found very hard working but still stay in the lower strata owing to petty politics. Your actions could lead to a lot of reactions, knowingly or unknowingly... some to the extent of being tagged harmful. The power of the book is its plot, tightly woven it is an unputdownable read.
The author has managed to redefine corporate politics with the games people play to come in power and outrun the other just for the sheer fun of it. With pages full of mystery, drama, blackmail and thrill this book promises to be a page turner. The author with his gripping writing style has managed to show us the scarier side of our future making you wonder if this is what 2050 is going to be like. 

Recommended for people who love reading dystopian or even otherwise , this is a book that needs to be read to know where are we headed to.... or to contemplate if we are already there!

Foodie Verdict

This book is like khichu - spicy, delicious and one that is a perfect combination of taste with texture! (Read: Fantasy, fiction and reality)



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