Check It Out: The Power by Naomi Alderman

Jul 24, 2018

This is Barb Gross with the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check it Out.

If you like thought-provoking science fiction, then my recommendation this week is for you. Today I’m recommending The Power by Naomi Alderman. It’s one that you’ll want to add to your reading list ASAP. I found it on several Best Books of 2017 Lists, including the New York Times and NPR lists, and this book did not disappoint. The story is written as if it were a historical novel from a time far in the future, looking back at the moment when teenage girls worldwide suddenly developed the ability to generate electrical power in their bodies, in a “skein” that runs along their collarbones. The mutation is found to be attributed to a World War II chemical experiment. The girls find that they are able to channel this power through their fingertips to either maim or kill. They also discover that they can give the ability to older women. Very quickly women took control of the world. Characters in this book include Roxy, a British mob leader’s daughter; Allie, an abused foster girl who takes refuge in a convent and becomes Mother Eve, a spiritual leader and healer for transformed girls; and Tunde, a Nigerian journalist who is the first to photograph a girl using her power on a boy, and it launches a highly successful career for him, covering the development of this power in far-flung parts of the world, and the violence that follows in its wake. What happens to the world when the balance of power shifts? Would a world controlled by women be a kinder, gentler place? Does power always corrupt? Check out The Power by Naomi Alderman and other compelling works of science fiction like it at the Sioux City Public Library.

Support for Check It Out comes from Avery Brothers.