Title: The Power
Author: Naomi Alderman
Average PSG Rating: 4.3/5
Favorite Quote: “One of them says, ‘Why did they do it?’ . . . And the other answers, ‘Because they could.’ That is the only answer there ever is.”
March was a long month (winter packed its bags then decided to stay a little longer), but that gave the PSG Book Club more time to read and discuss Naomi Alderman’s 2016 novel, The Power.
This science fiction novel, arguably more realistic than we’d like to believe, is about what happens in the days, months and years after women suddenly develop the ability to conduct electricity through and out of their bodies. Their power can cause healing, pain, pleasure and death depending on how they decide to yield it.
We follow four main narrators—Allie, Roxy, Margot and Tunde—experiencing the tumultuous changes in the world as women discover just what this power can do. Gender roles and politics are upended while governments and leaders around the globe struggle to control this newfound ability. With every chapter leading to some unknown event at the end of the novel, it’s easy to get caught up and accidentally read the whole thing in one night.
There’s so much to talk about in the book that we’ve had many subsequent discussions since our official meeting. We enjoyed the diversity of narrators and the interspersed images of artifacts that gave us an idea of the society we were watching change before our eyes. Colleen commented that, “It was interesting to see where this new world evolved to once the balance of strength/power had shifted from men to women.” As this was our book club’s highest rating so far, it’s safe to say this book was a thought-provoking and electrifying read.
Love this post? Read our previous PSG Book Club picks here.