Mary Anne's Reviews > The Powerbook

The Powerbook by Jeanette Winterson
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May 19, 08

Read in February, 2002

After reading ,The Passion by this author, I was expecting something a bit more significant. But alas, it was not to be. A clever idea, though.

In online chat rooms, people take on alternate personas. This is about someone who helps others do that and who develop the story that goes with it. The story here is about two women who become lovers as a result. There are other stories sprinkled it. The book begins with Ali, who smuggles the first tulips to Holland from Turkey, bound to herself as balls. The stem of a tulip is the penis. It must have been quite a tulip, because she is able to have sex with a princess with this flower!

Other stories include the Muck family. The father keeps poisons in the basement, and the mother warns her not to spell anything or learn anything because that is not valued.

There are also references to Woolf’s Orlando, which also includes sex confusion, but much better written.

Winterson makes a lot of declarative statements, like “Death can change the body but not the heart.” I’m not sure what you call these pronouncements, but they get to be annoying after a while.

This was an OK book, but I doubt if I will recommend it to anyone.
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