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The power : a novel
2017
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  New York Times Review

FIRE AND FURY: Inside the Trump White House, by Michael Wolff. (Picador, $18.) Remember the book that had everyone talking this time last year? In Wolff's telling, President Trump is a barely literate chief executive who heads up a chaotic, aberrant White House. The anecdotes are entertaining, if deeply unrewarding (and at their worst, thinly sourced). A media reporter, Wolff is strongest on his subject's insecurities and psychological hang-ups. THE POWER, by Naomi Alderman. (Back Bay/Little, Brown, $16.99.) One of the Book Review's 10 Best Books of 2017, this novel imagines the sudden emergence of an "electrostatic power" in women that upends gender dynamics across the world. Through the lives of several female characters, the story explores a grim idea: that no one is immune to power's corruptive effects. OFF THE CHARTS: The Hidden Lives and Lessons of American Child Prodigies, by Ann Hulbert. (Vintage, $16.95.) Why do many exceptional children fail to sustain their success into adulthood? Hulbert offers an empathetic view of some child geniuses, including Shirley Temple and Bobby Fischer. She aims to "listen hard for the prodigies' side of the story," as she puts it. At the same time, she avoids preachy parenting advice. THE LARGESSE OF THE SEA MAIDEN: Stories, by Denis Johnson. (Random House, $17.) This posthumous collection takes up many of Johnson's central themes, including his preoccupation with mortality. Johnson died in 2017, and his impending death is felt on the margins of these last stories, without straying into morbidity. As our reviewer, Rick Moody, wrote, Johnson draws on his "singular skill" for revelation to "brighten the interiors of tragedy and help us wave off the vultures hovering above." HIPPIE FOOD: How Back-to-the-Landers, Longhairs, and Revolutionaries Changed the Way We Eat, by Jonathan Kauffman. ( Morrow/ HarperCollins, $16.99.) Kauffman, a food reporter, outlines how the counterculture of the 1960s continues to shape American tastes and diets today. Our reviewer, Michael Pollan, said that this entertaining history shows that the hippie ideal "has lost none of its power, and continues to feed a movement." THREE DAUGHTERS OF EVE, t by Elif Shafak. (Bloomsbury, $18.) At an upscale dinner party in present-day Istanbul, Peri recalls her college days at Oxford, where she and two friends came to be known as the Sinner, the Confused and the Believer. Shafak, one of Turkey's best-known authors, explores the relationship between faith and doubt in a time of political upheaval.

  Publishers Weekly Review

Alderman's science fiction novel, set all over the world, was awarded the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction. Sometime in the near future, young women discover they have within them the ability to unleash skeins of electrical current that can maim and kill. One of them, an abused American foster child, joins a group of nuns, reinventing herself as the healer Mother Eve. She promotes a new religion in which Jews look to Miriam, Muslims to Fatimah, Christians to Mary. Her ally is an English crime lord's daughter named Roxy, whose skein is warrior strong, and whose violent family has global connections. Meanwhile Tunde, an opportunistic photojournalist, manages to break the news of several women's revolts across the world. The first upheavals are in Saudi Arabia and Moldova, places where women have few rights. But the woman who rules Bessapara, the first nation of the new world order, is unscrupulous and afraid, and she creates further instability by stripping men in her country of all rights and implicitly threatening world war. Roxy runs into trouble trying to keep a lid on this international situation, while Mother Eve convinces herself it might be for the best to start the world anew. Margot, an American politician taught to tap into her skein by her daughter, rises to power in the States, her message becoming more hawkish as she gains influence. But she is corrupted by her addiction to power over her male rivals, and she, too, plays a part in the endgame. Alderman tests her female characters by giving them power, and they all abuse it. Readers should not expect easy answers in this dystopian novel, but Alderman succeeds in crafting a stirring and mind-bending vision. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Summary
What would happen if women suddenly possessed a fierce new power? <br> " The Power is our era's The Handmaid's Tale ." --Ron Charles, Washington Post <br> **WINNER OF THE BAILEYS WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION**<br> 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<br> One of the Washington Post's Ten Best Books of the Year An NPR Best Book of the Year<br> One of Entertainment Weekly's Ten Best Books of the Year<br> A San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of the Year A Bustle B est Book of the Year<br> A Paste Magazine Best Novel of the Year A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice An Amazon Best Book of the Year<br> <br> "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 <br> In THE POWER, the world is a recognizable place: there's a rich Nigerian boy who lounges around the family pool; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But then a vital new force takes root and flourishes, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power--they can cause agonizing pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world drastically resets.<br> <br> From award-winning author Naomi Alderman, THE POWER is speculative fiction at its most ambitious and provocative, at once taking us on a thrilling journey to an alternate reality, and exposing our own world in bold and surprising ways.<br> <br>
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