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Publisher's Summary

2017 Winner of the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction

'She throws her head back and pushes her chest forward and lets go a huge blast right into the centre of his body. The rivulets and streams of red scarring run across his chest and up around his throat. She'd put her hand on his heart and stopped him dead.'

Suddenly - tomorrow or the day after - girls find that with a flick of their fingers, they can inflict agonizing pain and even death.

With this single twist, the four lives at the heart of Naomi Alderman's extraordinary, visceral novel are utterly transformed, and we look at the world in an entirely new light. What if the power to hurt were in women's hands?

©2016 Naomi Alderman (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

Critic Reviews

"Electrifying! Shocking! Will knock your socks off! Then you'll think twice, about everything." (Margaret Atwood)
"The Power is a subtly funny, lyrical and utterly subversive vision of an impossible future. As all the best visionaries do, Alderman shines a penetrating and yet merciful light on to our present and the so many cruelties in which we may be complicit." (A. L. Kennedy)
"Alderman is a fluent and powerful writer." (Sunday Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • bookylady
  • 03-27-17

Wow! A shocking, visceral novel.Loved every minute

Any additional comments?

It is hard to do justice in a few lines to the amazing nature of this book. Naomi Alderman's vision of a world where women hold power over men through an astonishing physiological mechanism, is both terrifying and electrifying. The Power is about use and misuse of power, what sexual dominance actually means, how a shift in power can produce world-altering results and how power corrodes humanity and the psychology of relationships. The characters are wonderfully written and the attention to detail is fantastic. The plot is absorbing and full of twists and turns. Every female and male character adds to the story and brings it to a thought-provoking end. This is a novel that made me wince, laugh, cry and feel very uncomfortable at times. But it also held me spellbound, caught in a story I didn't want to end. Interestingly, as a female, I found many of the female characters unlikeable and deeply disturbing and I am still trying to work out why that was. This book will stay with me for a long time and I am desperate to discuss it with female friends. <br/>The narration was fantastic.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • jo
  • 12-18-16

Reeling from the power of this book.

I may become a bit evangelical in my wish to share this book... It is astonishingly good. This book makes me feel invincible. (Hope I remember soon that I don't, in fact, have The Power so I'm not!)
Can't say too much in case of spoilers, but it's so clever and thought-provoking and engaging, it's hard to 'put down'. It is blunt in places - the reversal of women using rape as an instrument of war, for example - but some bits so subtle it's almost painful to realise how immune we are to incipient sexism until we hear it reversed in this way. The conversation between the two authors at the opening and closing of the book is a superb illustration, and the final line just says it all.
Honourable mention should go to the narrator who is *phenomenal*. Great dramatic performance AND she's very good at the many different international and regional accents, which is often such an irritation.
Can't praise it highly (or articulately) enough.

23 of 25 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs Charlotte Gaeta
  • 02-22-17

Brilliant!

This is a must read for anyone who cares about relationships, human rights and everything in between. What starts off as a fantastic twist of fate which finally sets women on the path to the potential for proper equality gently and systematically turns the tables and shows how the gaining of power can corrupt. A morality tale for the 21st century, highlighting where inequality is still riff in the world and pondering whether if women ruled the world it would be any better? It's also an incredibly brilliant read!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • blewp1977
  • 02-17-17

a clever and provocative narrative

This was an absolute find. Thought-provoking and compelling, I could have listened to this in one sitting.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Asper
  • 01-26-17

Awesome, in the true sense of the word

Would you listen to The Power again? Why?

Yes. The story is both compelling and well written, and the Adjoa Andoh is easily one of the best narrators I've heard.

What did you like best about this story?

The tenacity of the plot; prologue and epilogue serve as a heady contrast to the main body of the work, especially in audiobook format.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

It's difficult to say without spoling the plot. There are so many viewpoints and reflections of our patriarchal society, it really is something to listen to. This book would be an excellent read for teenagers of both sexes.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Easily.

Any additional comments?

Alderman takes a subject currently under much discussion - that of whether gender is innate, or even an undeniable factor in how people are in themselves, and how they treat each other; or if we are all people, some of the female sex and some of the male, all capable of the same highs and lows. <br/><br/>I am so very glad this book didn't trek down the well travelled road of females being more nurturing, more caring; that a matriarchal society would be inherently better. After all, the sex of ones brain is not biologically discrete from the rest of ones body; and although society likes to think so, men and women are only physically different. The most compelling thing, for me, were the many moments of 'what if' triggered whilst listening to this.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Raine
  • 12-29-16

Visceral, Stirring and Inspirational

Would you consider the audio edition of The Power to be better than the print version?

I only listened to the audio version.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Power?

There were so many moments, but overall the finding of the 'power', as told by several different perspectives, was so intense and made you think so much. It made me reflect on so many issues in my daily life I never would have reflected on otherwise.

Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favourite?

I loved Ally. Her journey and how she changed over the course of the books, leading up to her final realisations of what she had become were incredibly moving and thought-provoking.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Absolutely!

Any additional comments?

The narration was the best I've ever heard on an audiobook. Wonderful.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • AandL272
  • 02-26-17

amazing

This book is beautifully written; Naomi Alderman has an excellent ear for the voices of her cast. I especially liked her narration which added to the text- no rushed prose and emphasis perfect. There wasn't one point where I could guess what happened next. The characterisation was rich and complex, believable flawed people. What a pleasure to hear.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Roisin Taylor
  • 01-03-17

One of the greatest and most inspiring, thought provoking texts I have ever read.

What a sensation. Do not ponder upon reading/listening to this book, do it immediately. This should be required reading for school children across the country, if not world. Beautifully written, the characters carefully crafted to be no more easily loved than hated. The style/form of the book is so incredibly clever that it leaves you open mouthed.
I could not recommend this more highly, it is a must read. I will be recommending it to everyone I know.

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael Darch
  • 06-22-17

Great premise, weak execution.

I got hooked into the first half of this book because of its original premise and was excited to see how it would effect the cast of interesting characters.

Sadly it lost me in the second half as I found the character arcs to be disappointing and the whole premise starts getting really silly in places.

If you're not sure I would still say check it out because it is still an interesting premise and the voice over work throughout is great.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Kaggy
  • 10-24-17

A thriller to make you think

My head is still buzzing several days after finishing this story and I don't think I have ever read something that horrified and inspired me quite as much as this. Naomi Alderton has a fresh and insightful voice and the ability to write a thrilling and captivating tale to really make you think about power and its abuse, both in an imagined future and the real world we live in today. The narration of this audiobook is first class but a special mention has to be made of Adjoa Andoh who is one of the best narrators around.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Kathryn
  • 12-13-17

Must read for everyone with an wothout a gender

Naomi Alderman's gender swapped novel of power dynamics lights-up vital new ideas of gender equality.

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  • Hilary
  • 09-21-17

Next Big Thing

I loved this book. Genuinely gutted when it ended. The characters were fascinating, the premise was well thought through, the story was performed with flair and drama. It felt more like a play than an audio book. Totally recommend.

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  • Ebba Claire Austen
  • 09-07-17

Brilliant

Honestly just so good! The writing is wonderful, the characters are believable and the voice performances are great. Made me feel completely electric.

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  • J. Bird
  • 08-28-17

Great story

Nice job of turning gender bias and inequality on it's head. Captivating storyline and well narrated. I'd recommend this to anyone.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-28-17

Hated the character accents.

I really really hated the character accents. So distracting. Made it a chore to listen to.

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  • Jane Douglas
  • 08-18-17

Loved this book!

Beautifully written and beautifully read. Well-rounded characters, a thoughtfully constructed, believable world, and a plot and adjacent forward flashes that draw the reader onward in nervous fascination. Read this one.

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  • Kellie Grealy
  • 07-30-17

Omg

Wow.... Intense. Interesting. Incredibly thought provoking and confronting.
Wonderful voice performance by all performers. Not for your casual Sunday read.

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  • pieta
  • 07-19-17

Excellent! A must read

I loved this book, right to the VERY end. A very clever idea and well written without being too dark. I laughed so hard to myself at the end.

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  • Emma
  • 06-29-17

Outstanding performance. Best audio book yet!

i loved this book. It was fantastically written & performed, in fact the best performance in an audio book yet. I loved the way it twists pre conceived ideas about gender.

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  • stephanie
  • 08-21-17

Don't bother

The premise is interesting but that is all this book has going for it. Unbelievable characters, convoluted narrative and terrible narration made listening to this audiobook a chore. It is the only audiobook I have been unable to finish! Try something else.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful