The Power (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Girls suddenly develop the power to send electrical charges through their fingers. As the power grows worldwide and girls teach older women how to develop it themselves, several women gain key political and religious positions and political unrest heightens to critical levels. The ending is thrilling, shocking, and thoroughly unsettling, and will challenge your beliefs about the roles of men and women in society. Brilliant!

— Kay Wosewick


What would happen if women suddenly possessed a fierce new power?

"The Power is our era's The Handmaid's Tale." --Ron Charles, Washington Post


One of the New York Times's Ten Best Books of the Year
One of President Obama's favorite reads of the Year
A Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year
One of the Washington Post's Ten Best Books of the Year
An NPR Best Book of the Year
One of Entertainment Weekly's Ten Best Books of the Year
A San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of the Year
A Bustle Best Book of the Year
A Paste Magazine Best Novel of the Year
A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice

An Amazon Best Book of the Year

"Alderman's writing is beautiful, and her intelligence seems almost limitless. She also has a pitch-dark sense of humor that she wields perfectly." --Michael Schaub, NPR

All over the world women and girls are discovering they have the power. With a flick of the fingers they can inflict terrible pain, and even death. And with this small twist of nature, everything changes drastically.

Ambitious and provocative, visceral and page-turning, award-winning author Naomi Alderman's THE POWER at once takes us on a journey to an alternate reality and exposes our own world in bold and surprising ways.

About the Author

Naomi Alderman is the recipient of the 2017 Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction for The Power. She is also the author of The Liars' Gospel and Disobedience, which won the Orange Prize for New Writers, has been published in ten languages, and has been made into a film by Rachel Weisz. Alderman was selected for Granta's once-a-decade list of Best of Young British Novelists and was chosen by Margaret Atwood as part of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. She is the cocreator and lead writer of the bestselling smartphone audio adventure app Zombies, Run! She contributes regularly to The Guardian and presents Science Stories on BBC Radio 4. She lives in London.

Praise For…

Praise for THE POWER:

"Electrifying! Shocking! Will knock your socks off! Then you'll think twice, about everything."
Margaret Atwood

"Magnificent. I'm agog. I'm several gogs. Smart and scary and sad but true. It's
a classic, in the way that it's hard to imagine it ever wasn't there."—Joss Whedon

"Alderman has written our era's Handmaid's Tale, and, like Margaret Atwood's classic, The Power is one of those essential
feminist works that terrifies and illuminates, enrages and encourages....This
book sparks with such electric satire that you should read it wearing insulated
gloves."—Ron Charles, Washington Post

"Narratively complex, philosophically searching,
and gorgeously rendered."—Lisa Shea, Elle

"Fierce and unsettling...Through immersive prose and a riveting plot, Alderman explores how power corrupts everyone: those who gain it, and those resisting its loss."—Radhika Jones, New York Times Book Review

"Richly imagined, ambitious, and propulsively
written."—Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic

"Alderman's writing is beautiful, and her intelligence seems
almost limitless. She also has a pitch-dark sense of humor that she wields
perfectly."Michael Schaub, NPR

"Alderman's tilted dystopia is a smartly layered place of slippery slopes and moral ambiguities, a fitting folktale for strange times."—Leah Greenblatt, Entertainment Weekly

"I was riveted by every page. Alderman's prose
is immersive and, well, electric, and I felt a closed circuit humming between
the book and me as I read."—Amal El-Mohtar, New York Times Book Review

"An instant classic of speculative fiction... Smart, readable and joyously achieved."
Justine Jordan, Guardian

"Bold and's
not just a book of the moment. The Power is a major innovation in the
overlapping genres of feminist dystopia/utopia, science fiction, and
speculative fiction."—Elaine Showalter, New York Review of Books

of speculative fiction (see also: Margaret Atwood and Ben Marcus) about
empowered youth will be struck by Alderman's speedy and thorough inhabitation
of a world just different enough from ours to jolt the imagination. Mothers,
lock up your boys."—Sloane Crosley, Vanity Fair

"Alderman has the daring and good sense to
eschew go-girl uplift in favor of terrifying and complex dystopia."—Boris Kachka, Vulture/ New York Magazine

"A suspenseful thrill ride filled with deep, contrasting female leads
on a scaffolding of philosophical questions about how different men and women
are at heart....Reminiscent of the work of Alderman's mentor Margaret Atwood, The
is perfect for book clubs, where readers will undoubtedly debate the
finer points of nature versus nurture."—Jaclyn Fulwood, Shelf Awareness

"The Power is stupendous. It's gorgeously written, endlessly exciting, fun, and frightening."
Ayelet Waldman, author of A Really Good Day

"The Hunger Games crossed with The Handmaid's Tale."

"What starts out as a fantasy of female empowerment deepens and darkens into an interrogation of power itself, its uses and abuses and what it does to the people who have it... Alderman's breakout work."
Claire Armitstead, Guardian

"Outstanding... Alderman imagines a world much like ours, with one difference: teenage girls suddenly have the ability to electrocute people. This is the perfect read if you've been itching for something to get you through to season two of The Handmaid's Tale."—Melissa Ragsdale, Bustle

"The Power is at once as streamlined as a
90-minute action film and as weirdly resonant as one of Atwood's own early
fictions... Alderman has conducted a brilliant thought experiment in the nature
of power itself...Turning the world inside out, she reveals how one of the
greatest hallmarks of power is the chance to create a mythology around how that
power was used."—John Freeman, Boston Globe

"This is a thriller that terrifies and leaves behind a
lingering tingle that's part discomfort and part exhilaration. Easy to read,
hard to put down, difficult to forget."—Cory Doctorow, Boing Boing

"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

"Please, please, PLEASE read Naomi Alderman's The Power. It'll crack your brain open in all the right ways. Such an important, timely book."
Literary Death Match

"Audaciously depict[s]...the most extreme
results of a movement that seeks rather than interrogates power: That if
feminism has become a means for domination, it has lost its way."—Bridget Read, Vogue

"Ingenious....Deserves to be read by every woman (and, for that matter, every man)."
Francesca Steele, The Times UK

"A page-turning thriller and timely exploration of gender roles, censorship and repressive political regimes, The Power is a must-read for today's times."—Lauren Bufferd, BookPage

"Gripping and disturbing, it pushes the reader -- even the confidently feminist reader -- to question the assumptions underlying many of the mechanisms that drive relationships between women and men."
Harper's Bazaar UK

"Alderman's storytelling is visceral and brave; you'll stay up all night reading after a thousand deals with the clock that you'll put it down after just a few more pages. Gleeful, intelligent, clever, and unflinching, The Power is the kind of book to keep a person going."—Fiona Zublin, Ozy

"A searing critique of how power is used in a world in which a long-oppressed class can suddenly fight back."—Renay Williams, Barnes & Noble Blog

"By gleefully replacing the protocols of one gender with another, Alderman has created a thrilling narrative stuffed with provocative scenarios and thought experiments. The Power is a blast."

Suzi Feay, Financial Times UK

"When we say that The Power is profoundly disturbing and you may well want to argue with it as you read, we mean that in a good way."
SFX, Five Stars
Product Details
ISBN: 9780316547604
ISBN-10: 0316547603
Publisher: Back Bay Books
Publication Date: January 8th, 2019
Pages: 400
Language: English