Saturday, 4 November 2017

The Power by Naomi Alderman | Book Review

Book: The Power

Author: Naomi Alderman

Publisher: Penguin

Pages: 340 Pages

Format: Paperback

Source: Purchased at Daunt Books

Rating: 5/5 Stars

In The Power the world is a recognisable place: there's a rich Nigerian kid who larks around the family pool; a foster girl whose religious parents hide their true nature; a local American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But something vital has changed, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power - they can cause agonising pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world changes utterly.

This extraordinary novel by Naomi Alderman, a Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year and Granta Best of British writer, is not only a gripping story of how the world would change if power was in the hands of women but also exposes, with breath-taking daring, our contemporary world.

The Power is a slow building yet fast paced thrilling story about the violent shift from a patriarch to a matriarch, and I am in love with this story. The story starts with a world that is totally recognizable -- it is our world. And then girls start developing Skeins, which bring with them the ability to produce electricity, and the ability to awaken the Skeins in the bodies of other older women. This allows women and girls to rise up and revolt, something which starts slowly before escalating to a spectacular climax.

I don't want to give away spoilers for the book, because I went in knowing almost nothing and i'd love for people to read it that way. I was blown away by the way this book was written and the way each and every piece came together. From the broader stories of Mother Eve and the connection with religion, to the inclusion of Tunde, a young Nigerian man turned reporter, and our only male narrator, almost everything in this book felt necessary, and it all fit together like an unsettling puzzle. There were sections that were so graphic that I felt myself feeling sick, and there were scenes where tables were turned in their world, and I couldn't look away. Alderman is asking the questions that all women think of in this day and age and she voices it and holds back no punches. "What would happen if men were afraid for their physical wellbeing?" she asks. "What would happen if the women who have been wronged would be able to get their revenge?"

This book was stunning and an absolute powerhouse of emotion. I felt moved by each and every character and with each twist and turn, and with every moment of subversion and every step closer to the center had me leaning in more and more. The only thing that i'm not too sold on is the framing of the novel. But I know people who are in love with this, and i'll leave that for you to decide. For me, it didn't really add anything for me.

Please go read this. God, do it. This is a dark, twisted, eye opening, life changing read. I am so in love with this. 

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