The Power by Naomi Alderman is a science fiction novel that looks at sexism and how the world would be if the women were the dominant gender.
The book was released in 2016 and in June 2017 it won the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction.
I really enjoyed this book and as I was reading it I couldn’t put it down. It is a book with action, emotion and great characters. It tackles a big topic but it does it in an interesting way.
It looks at sexism if the dominant gender was female and Alderman manages to turn the world on its head with ease. The way that at one point the world realizes that the women have the power to electrocute and use these powers is interesting. The way that everyone in the book and their society changes. Where the men are scared to go out at night and need to have a female guardian. Although sexism in the real world is not expressed in this way and its not as clean cut as men or women cannot walk at night a lot of fiction depicts it as this way. Therefore to see it opposite to what you usually come across is exciting and new. it shows what the wolrd could be like if society didn’t and doesn’t continue to tackle sexism (with a science fiction twist)
I thought that the characters in this book were great and the way the book was structured around these characters and their viewpoints was a good way to combat this story. Each character was able to bring something to the book that made it more interesting and a talking point. What would happen if a women in government had the power? what happened if a girls power wasn’t working the way it should have? what happens if a boy has it? what happens when the female takes over the family crime business?
All the different characters allowed you to see the events surrounding the discovery much more comprehensible and gave you an insight into the size and scale of the effects surrounding it. I personally liked Roxy the best, she had done bad stuff and did run a criminal organisation but I felt her character was the most likable. Especially towards the end of the book after something life changing effects her. She goes into hiding and when she resurfaces we get to see the real Roxy again. One of the main characters Allie I also liked but I felt her ‘Mother Eve’ persona was starting to change her and effect her choices, not necessarily for the better.
As I mentioned above the structure of the book is written by character rather than chapter. The book is separates into sections based on time periods but similar size to chapters are alternate sections of different characters viewpoint and opinions. I think this worked well for this book as there was a lot going on and many sub-plots and it was easy to keep a track of when structured this way. The book is very well written which helped to keep confusion at bay.
The story itself is exciting and enthralling to read but after the fist half or just before you realize that this power is not a good discovery as people begin to use it foe violence and to get what they want.
This book is one I loved and would highly recommend you read it. I really liked Alderman’s writing style and I cannot wait to read another of her books!
Many thanks, Caitlin x
(PS please comment whether you have read this books or any from the same author)
Personally I don’t read much non-fiction but that doesn’t mean I don’t like it.
Non-fiction as a genre is huge and has many variety of types. For example, autobiography, encyclopedia, teaching and learning material etc. The list goes on.
I like to read non fiction however unless it is one I really want to read, I often don’t enjoy it as much as a fictional book.
I like autobiographies as they give you an insight into another life, let’s you see what the life of a celebrity is. I particularly enjoyed reading Amy Poehler book as it was honest and blunt. I also really want to read Jenna Fischer Book: the acting life. I am a fan of her as an actor and intrigues to see what she says about her profession.
Non fiction is also a great way to teach and learn whether that be in a class environment or as a passtime at home.
I really should read more non-fiction!
Many thanks, Caitlin X
(Ps please comment your opinion of non fiction or you favourite non fiction book!?
The Melody by Jim Crace is a tender psychological fiction novel which features music, celebrity, intrigue and lost love.
In all honesty, I wasn’t the biggest fan of this book and I lost interest for a bit. It was a very atmoshperic book but not much seemed to happen that kept me engaged. There was the mystery of the creature that attacked Busi however that seemed to be in tha background. Maybe it is just because i tend to liek books with a lot going on but I felt even for a book with a subtle storyline it was a little boring.
I felt that the characters where not really explored. We got an insight into Alfred Busi which was good however it didn’t go into as much depth as I would have enjoyed. Yet again this is personal and could be purely because of the first things I look for is characterization. The other characters such as his sister in law and her son were good but again not thoroughly explored. I also didn’t fully understand the two characers at the end of the book, Lex and Busi tennant. i don’t quite understand the relevance.
Yet again this is all personal and I have read reviews of people you have really liked this book for its whimsical and how it looks at loss and mortality. I would definatly recommend that you should read more reviews before deciding whether you want to read this book as I am only one opinion.
I think I may not have connected with this book as well as some of those who have left much better reviews. I wasn’t the biggest fan but that doesn’t mean that you will not so I would one hundred percent recommend to read other reviews to gauge whether you would like it!
Many thanks, Caitlin x
(PS please comment if you have ever read this book or would like to)
When it comes to books the length often is a deal breaker on whether to buy it.
Personally I prefer shorter books so that I can read it in a shorter period of time and have the chance to read another. I feel that when I read a longer one I tend to lose interest at some point.
If I were to read a longer book it would have to have shorter chapters or sections. I find this helps to motivate me to read as I can set myself goals.
Some people however much prefer to read longer books as there can be more depth or subplots. It may take more time to explore a character or storyline. You can also feel more invested in the book if you are reading it for longer.
It is a completely personal thing and you can discuss your opinion in the comments !
When it comes to your bookshelf you gave a vast array of books from different times and places. I thought that I would have a look at my own bookshelf and see what the oldest book I own is.
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett is that book. I believe that it was my mum’s when she was younger and she always loved it and I was given it to enjoy just the same. I haven’t read this book in a long time and I’m not sure I have even read it the whole way through but even though that is the case I still love it.
You can tell it was loved with the slightly scruffy corners and the evident use through the pages. I personally believe that this adds character to the book and gives me a visual to how it was loved.
The book was first published is 1976 and this copy in 1977
This copy is also fairly unique, as the from and back cover is upside down to the text.
My mum always said that it looked bizarre and as if she was reading the book upside down which I like. I think it adds another quality to the book.
I will one day finally get round to reading the full book and maybe even trick down people with the upside down cover.