Friday, January 12, 2018

The Power by Naomi Alderman

Alderman explores the question 'What if the power to hurt was in women's hands?' How would the world change? She explores this topic through four characters. Allie, an abused teenager who kills her foster-dad and becomes the world religious leader Mother Eve. Tunde, a Nigerian journalist who sets out to chronicle the sudden and drastic changes around the world with this evolutionary change in women. Margot, an ambitious small-town mayor in America's northeast with a daughter who has a disability in her new-found powers. And finally Roxy, a British crime daughter who has a ton of power and knows how to use it.

I found the four stories a bit distracting but also fascinating. They come together toward the end and it's a bit unbelievable but overall the characters feel fleshed out and the story is terrifying.

Alderman flips the script. Men start to feel scared like they can't walk the streets without a woman with them. Governments topple. Can women run the world any better?

It's a fascinating thought experiment and a must-read. You can see how ridiculous it is and yet how true these stories are for many women around the world.

All the characters are single and I wish she would have had one who was married or in a long-term relationship with a man to explore how those dynamics may have changed with this new shift of power.


  1. Three things:
    1. Margot is from the American northeast, not Indiana.
    2. It's not really all that ridiculous. (Except the biophysics are a bit of a stretch.)
    3. Yes, you have an excellent point about exploring a woman who is married although there was the woman married to the leader of Moldova and she kills him. Fortunately, this book will become a TV program of sone sort. It would be nice to see what you suggest with an ordinary married woman with a son and daughter.

    1. Thanks for the correction. I've reflected that in my review. My unbelievable comment was in direct reflection of how the characters all come together in the end, not the story of how women would deal with this new-found power.

      Thanks for commenting!


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