The Power

The Power

Book - 2017
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How would the world look if girls were stronger than boys? Naomi Alderman's extraordinary new novel reveals a world where power lies in new hands. In Naomi Alderman's new world sources of control have shifted. Children play differently, violence is enacted in surprising new ways and the link between physical strength, status, sex and power is made plain. For, in The Power, Naomi Alderman's disturbing, brilliantly original new novel, girls fight boys in the playground and win, pretty young women are not personal assistants but security guards. Women are stronger than men and the world has changed, utterly.
Publisher: [London] :, Penguin Books,, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780670919963
Branch Call Number: FICTION ALD
Characteristics: ix, 340 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm


From Library Staff

List - The Handmaid's Tale
WVMLlibrarian May 19, 2017

In the very near future, teenage girls develop an immense physical Power. It can cause pain and even death to those around them, and some can control their new Power better than others. This small evolution changes society, politics, and the economy for ever more.

In The Power, change begins when teenage girls develop the power to create skeins of electrical current that can injure and kill. Some can control the power in order to protect themselves, while others struggle with their new strength. When the girls awaken the power in older women, there is no t... Read More »

Book Riot's 2018 Read Harder Challenge #17: A sci fi novel with a female protagonist by a female author

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Feb 16, 2018

I really enjoyed this book with its total swap of the male female universe and the exploration of power. Is the tendency toward violence inherent, or just because someone can? Very thought provoking. I will look for more from this author.

Feb 06, 2018

Got halfway through and decided it wasn't worth the time it would take to finish it. Predictable dystopian scenario's, nothing really interesting and the switching from one person's viewpoint to another was annoying.

Feb 02, 2018

As mentioned previously, this book contains deeply disturbing scenes of sexual violence. It left me deeply unsettled when I finished it late last night. My mind was too agitated to fall asleep.

Knowing that the author was part of a mentorship program with Margaret Atwood explains the confusing framing device between the fictional author and a reviewer. It reminded me of the postscript in a Handmaid's Tale.

Overall, I was disappointed with the missed opportunities as pointed out by previous reviewers. Perhaps a few more drafts were in order before publishing.

Jan 24, 2018

**SPOILER ALERT** I wanted to love this book, but it disappointed me deeply. The writing is engaging, the characters are interesting, the switcheroo premise is interesting & believably executed, the development kept me turning pages and was often jaw-dropping. But... and this is a BIG but... this book wanted to be so radical, and it wants to pretend that it IS so radical, and it's not.
This author missed such an amazing opportunity to examine the nature of power itself, rather than just switching gender roles (we've seen that in so many B movies already!). Once again, 'POWER' = the power to hurt, to coerce, to destroy. I kept waiting for the author to make a radical move and show us that POWER is also (I'd argue more fundamentally) the power to create, love, and heal. What if giving women this new gift had enabled at least SOME of them to coalesce in joyful solidarity? What if the twist had given us a real show-down between two radically different conceptions of power? I kept waiting for the author to show me something new. All I got was 'power corrupts women as quickly as it does men.' A valid hypothesis, but nothing as fresh or radical as the blurbs led me to hope.

Jan 22, 2018

This book kind of shook me to my core. With a narrative that examines and flips the power dynamic of men and women this book felt like an incredibly timely read right now. Naomi Alderman took the idea of a women-lead society to a place I haven't seen before.

Jan 20, 2018


Jan 20, 2018

I really liked this book, and finished it in three days which is fast for me given my schedule. It felt somewhat like "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card in some respects, with a story that focused on individuals who play major roles in the future of the planet. It doesn't paint a pretty picture of men OR women when given power over others. I liked the framing conceit of the story, which implied (to me) that we are destined to live out a horrific future, and that horror is cyclical: build, fail, destroy, repeat...

DPLjennyp Jan 16, 2018

Great storytelling and so very topical right now.

Dec 19, 2017

One of the New York Times Best 10 Books of 2017

#8 on Entertainment Weekly's Best Books of 2017

Dec 18, 2017

I picked this up b/c I found it on a number of "Best of 2017" lists. It was interesting and engaging, but not really a thriller or an intense "page turner." The genre is one that I like - our recognizable universe, but with a twist - women have an innate power to electrically shock men and cause them great pain or pleasure (or both together.) Reading this in light of the #metoo movement adds a dimension of realism about the complicated gender relationships which arise in the world of the book where women have all of the power. And like the famous quote: Absolute power corrupts absolutely as the book's world of literally empowered women becomes as violent and cruel (albeit in slightly different ways) as our own.

I am confused though by the framing device of the story being a fictionalization of events that happened in the distant (?) past. I could have done without the correspondence between the male author of the "historical fiction" within the larger novel and his female editor as this didn't add anything to the overall story for me.

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