The Power by Naomi Alderman book review

All it takes for revolution is a spark in Naomi Alderman’s The Power

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Teenage girls all over the word begin to develop a strange new power that allows them to discharge electricity through their palms. This phenomena can be passed from woman to woman with one touch. The spark to ignite revolution is literally in their hands.

The story follows the lives of Margot; her frightened daughter Jos; Allie, transforming into the Prophet, Mother Eve; Roxy the daughter of a London gangster, and Tunde, a lone man searching for a story.

Alderman was mentored by Margaret Atwood, and her influence is evident. As the world within the pages descends further into disorder, the attempts of the characters to maintain and accept everyday life increases. This book is not only a gripping yarn about people with powers and the responsibilities attached to that; it delves deeper into recognisable struggles, from bullying to nuclear war.

Strangely, the best thing about The Power is its predictability. As each segment unfurls, you begin to see just how terribly wrong things are about to go. Each character stumbles on, convinced that each action is for the greater good, blind to how unfixable the chaos has become. The more warped their sense of perception gets, the more drawn in we become.

The heroes’ journeys become progressively darker. Men and women turn on each other with harrowing consequences, which Alderman doesn’t shy away from describing.

It is a great blend of reality and fantasy; exploring how a slight shift in power can hatch a dystopic world.