Release Date: September 21st, 2017
The Hunger Games meets Romeo and Juliet in a stunning debut about a forbidden romance between a young activist and a government employee for a corrupt bureau that controls the population by deciding who lives and who dies.
Roman Irvine is a disgruntled IT Technician for the Divinity Bureau, a government agency that uses random selection to decide who lives and who dies. In a world where overpopulation has lead to pollution, a crippled economy, and a world in crisis, he’s accepted the bureau’s activities as a necessity… until he meets April McIntyre.
April has every reason to be suspicious of Roman. He works for the Divinity Bureau, which sent her father to an early grave. But he’s also sweet and loyal, and unbeknownst to her, he saved her life. As Roman and April fall deeper in love, the deeper they’re thrust into the politics of deciding who lives and who dies. Someone wants April dead. And the bureau’s process of random selection may not be so random after all…
The World of “The Divinity Bureau:” How Current Events Shaped the Confederal Districts
My book, “The Divinity Bureau,” comes out September 21st. It’s the story about a world crippled by overpopulation and a government bureau that decides who lives and who dies by random selection. But above all, it’s a love story about a forbidden love between an activist against that bureau and a government employee that works for it. The very nature of the story itself has led to questions about whether such a scenario is not only feasible, but very much possible.
Most of my research for “The Divinity Bureau” was done by examining hypotheses made by futurists, but I also drew a lot of inspiration from current events that were happening around me.
Below are some of the real-world issues that inspired “The Divinity Bureau” and the world of the Confederal Districts:
· Overpopulation. “The Divinity Bureau” began as an exploration of overpopulation. I asked myself, “How would the government handle overpopulation?” But that question also lead to another one: “At one point does the earth have to be overpopulated to the point where the government will do something about it?” Overpopulation, in this story, has led to pollution, income inequality, food shortages, and a world in crisis. Roman, especially, feels the effects of this; he lives in a crippled economy where he has a hard time paying the bills. Yet April, the wealthy daughter of a politician, is less concerned about the effects of overpopulation and more concerned about the loss of freedom that she associates with the bureau.
· Pollution. One of the biggest issues with overpopulation is the strain that it puts on the environment. Poor air quality can irritate your eyes, nose, and throat, and it can cause shortness of breath, aggravate cardiovascular problems, and lead to serious health problems down the road. Roman and April typically need face masks even just to be outside, yet this is the reality in cities such as Beijing and Dehli.
· Income inequality. A big part of “The Divinity Bureau” was inspired when I started attending Occupy Chicago protests. In real life, much of the effects of overpopulation are truly felt by the lower class, who don’t have access to resources. In “The Divinity Bureau,” the poor don’t have access to the healthcare that leads to people to stop their aging, so poverty takes the form of wrinkles and old age in a world where the rest of the population can be forever young.
· Politics. I decided to pursue publication of “The Divinity Bureau” right after the US elections. There was something moving about watching the way people’s collective experiences and the issues they were affected by came together and formed one collective voice. But it was also interesting to see the way it tore people apart. In “The Divinity Bureau,” Roman and April are on opposite sides of the same issue. Both of their experiences warranted their views. Yet it’s interesting to see them come together and come to a consensus. In the sequel, their views are going to come to a greater clash to the point where it threatens their relationship.
To learn more about the current events that shaped this dystopian landscape, “The Divinity Bureau” is set to be released on September 21st. It’s available for pre-order on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and various other retailers.
About the author:
Tessa Clare is the author of The Divinity Bureau. When she’s not writing, she’s an entrepreneur, an activist, a speaker, and the Managing Director of Asset Creative House.
Throughout her early career, she was a concession stand attendant, a busgirl, a barista, a player’s club representative for a casino, and an administrative assistant. She also spent years working as a manager for Vacasa, whose business model and revolutionary marketing strategies would later inspire the groundwork for Asset Creative House.
The Divinity Bureau is Tessa’s debut novel about a forbidden love between a young activist and a government employee working for a corrupt bureau, set in a dystopian world.
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