The Power

eBook, 350 pages

English language

Published Oct. 10, 2017 by Little Brown and Company.

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4 stars (8 reviews)

What would happen if women suddenly possessed a fierce new power?

In THE POWER, the world is a recognizable place: there's a rich Nigerian boy who lounges around the family pool; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But then a vital new force takes root and flourishes, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power--they can cause agonizing pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world drastically resets.

From award-winning author Naomi Alderman, THE POWER is speculative fiction at its most ambitious and provocative, at once taking us on a thrilling journey to an alternate reality, and exposing our own world in bold and surprising ways.

7 editions

What if women were physically more powerful than men?

4 stars

Naomi Alderman's answer is not a ‘more kind, more gentle, more loving and naturally nurturing’ matriarchy that lets men off lightly. This is a violent, tumultuous tale that sometimes makes uncomfortable reading. But this is not ‘merely’ a list of feminist talking points brutally driven home; Alderman plays a long and subtle game, bedding in the most important and durable perspective changes (at least for this male reader) subtly over the course of the entire novel.

This novel is perhaps a kind of response to the call of Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, to which it owes much; from the framing of near-future action within far-future intellectual perspectives, to the presentation of events that appear at first preposterously unrealistic, until one realises that most have actually happened, and in some cases continue to happen, IRL.

It's a gripping, prespective-changing read.

Interesting after watching the TV series

4 stars

Yes, yes, I should read the original before watching the adaptation, but sometimes you can't help it. What's interesting here is the way the TV series tells the story in a much more conventional way than the novel, especially omitting the framing device that allows the novel to speed through many parts. There are times when I wished it would slow down a little and explore ideas a bit more, but it's a good read and raises a lot of interesting questions - and what if our whole existence is just part of a fable to explain the lost history of a distant future?

Good but

3 stars

Content warning Kind of hard to discuss the 'but' without giving something of the plot of the book away

Gender reversal dystopia with flaws

4 stars

Content warning Contains spoilers, mentions rape

Gender role reversal, not for the faint of heart

4 stars

Content warning CW: violence, child abuse, sexual assault, rape

avatar for maryaed

rated it

5 stars
avatar for marcphilipp

rated it

3 stars


  • Women--Fiction.
  • Teenage girls--Fiction.
  • Muscle strength--Women--Fiction.
  • Sex role--Fiction.
  • Social role--Fiction.