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The Power
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2017 Book of the Month > June 2017 The Power

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message 1: by Val (last edited Jun 08, 2017 02:22AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Val The winner of this year's prize and our book of the month is The Power by Naomi Alderman.
Please give it a try, even if you don't usually read science or speculative fiction.


message 2: by Penny (new) - added it

Penny (Literary Hoarders) (pennyliteraryhoarders) | 33 comments Okay! Going to give this one a try during this month!


Penny | 681 comments Mod
yes me too! this genre is certainly out of my comfort zone but every once in a while that's a good thing!


message 4: by Lagullande (last edited Jun 07, 2017 01:04PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Lagullande | 76 comments Penny wrote: "yes me too! this genre is certainly out of my comfort zone but every once in a while that's a good thing!"

Penny, I wouldn't say that the "sci-fi" aspect is a major thing in the book, so definitely don't be put off by that.


message 5: by Val (last edited Jun 10, 2017 03:43AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Val There are lots of reports in the news about this book today, but I am just going to post a link to one of them:
http://www.irishtimes.com/culture/boo...


Dyzelle | 7 comments I just went to buy this and realised I already had it on my kindle! Starting it now!


Drew (drewlynn) | 18 comments I read it on a train trip over the weekend and enjoyed it greatly. I laughed out loud at the bitten fruit artifact.


message 8: by Val (new) - rated it 4 stars

Val Drew wrote: "I read it on a train trip over the weekend and enjoyed it greatly. I laughed out loud at the bitten fruit artifact."
I liked the artifacts too
and the book is better for a few lighter bits.


Penny | 681 comments Mod
I'm on audio again which means I tend to be slower - I cross stitch or crochet while listening. It's coming along OK - more thoughts when further on


Penny | 681 comments Mod
I have let this one slide - but have recently started listening again - it was always going to be a less likely choice for me.


message 11: by Val (new) - rated it 4 stars

Val Is anyone still reading this one?
The women with power in this imagined world are just as likely to misuse it as men in the real world. What did you think about that?


message 12: by Drew (new) - rated it 4 stars

Drew (drewlynn) | 18 comments Val wrote: "Is anyone still reading this one?
The women with power in this imagined world are just as likely to misuse it as men in the real world. What did you think about that?"


One of my great disappointments in life is that when women IRL get the kind of power men have always had they don't act any better than the men did. :(


Arianna | 1 comments I just finished it!
In my view, the point was not to imaging a world run by women, were maybe we could do better than men. To me, the amazing point of this book is to report reality, masking it by fiction.
Read a paragraph about how women assault or dominate men: it sounds crazy, right? SO FICTION! But then, simply swap male/female, boy/girl, man/woman. Ta-da! It is not fiction anymore, it is just the way the real world is. No need electric power for men to dominate women.
This is what I found most interesting about this book: the fact that it seems "impossible" only because of the order male/female in it. If you invert that order, you are not reading a sci-fi fiction anymore, rather any "normal" newspaper.


Penny | 681 comments Mod
good point Arianna!

I am re-starting this as I have got bogged down with other reads and have this on audible.


Dyzelle | 7 comments I agree with Ariana's point, too!


Penny | 681 comments Mod
I am finding it very slow - I am not sure if it is the book/story itself or the audio format. It was always going to be out of my comfort zone anyway but the premise is original and interesting. My problem is there isn't one character I really care about. The girls are not defined enough for me and are busy being re-created in unpleasant ways. Also it jumps around and gives whole swathes of writing on something that isn't interesting ie the policies for the role of governor, Margot's hatred for the current incumbent - who cares? I am thinking, get back to the girls and give me more empathy towards them - but no we then get Tunday (sorry when you 'hear' rather than read you don't know how things are spelt!) and again his character is wooden to me and I keep thinking why are we following this one man?
The narration is good - it is read in a slow southern kind of drawl - at least that's how it sounds to me and that works fine but it adds to the general feeling of going slowly.
Do try it yourself though as many people have found it a good read and I am not the best judge of futuristic/fantastical kinds of stories.


message 17: by Val (new) - rated it 4 stars

Val There are several dramatic incidents, but the main story-line or lines unfold very slowly, I agree, and it must seem even slower as an audio version.
The author has put more thought and effort into imagining a scenario and what this might lead to than building detailed characters or a compelling story. I like a bit of speculative fiction from time to time, but this problem of the ideas overwhelming the story and characters happens quite often.
Tunde is a particularly weak character, perhaps a sort of token male character, in the way that women sometimes appear in books where men dominate all the action.


Penny | 681 comments Mod
well - ta dah!!! I finally got to the end of this. If I hadn't bought it on audible I would have stopped ages ago - although it was original and an intriguing premise I just didn't care enough so it was a long slog.


message 19: by Ace (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ace (aceonroam) I quite enjoyed this book although it did remind me of The Fireman by Joe Hill as the 'power' was similar to that story but I think the messages were worlds apart. My biggest fear while reading it was that the women would abuse their 'power'.


Penny | 681 comments Mod
Ace wrote: "I quite enjoyed this book although it did remind me of The Fireman by Joe Hill as the 'power' was similar to that story but I think the messages were worlds apart. My biggest fear while reading it ..."

which in many cases they did. I found some of the reversals slightly funny - in a rueful kind of way - ie men having to be authorised by women to travel, unable to hold down jobs without women's approval etc so many echoes of the past - does that mean no lessons are learned from domination of one sex over another? the seat of authority in this book has the pendulum of overwhelming power swinging way out to show how people respond initially to an increase in status and influence - they get drunk on it!


message 21: by Ace (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ace (aceonroam) Penny wrote: "they get drunk on it!..."

Yes, I don't know if I was disappointed that the storyline went this way, or that it was totally realistic that it did...


Lagullande | 76 comments Ace wrote: "Penny wrote: "they get drunk on it!..."

Yes, I don't know if I was disappointed that the storyline went this way, or that it was totally realistic that it did..."


I was definitely disappointed, Ace. It might be the most likely outcome though. I guess I was hoping that there would be a middle way.


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