The world has always been afraid of the teenage girl. She is a complicated mixture of innocence and sexuality, one who society has fought to suppress, subdue or, alternatively, capitalise on. She is spotty but sexy but bitchy but annoying but opinionated. It’s no meaningless metaphor that this year’s runaway bestseller and winner of the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, The Power by Naomi Alderman, tells the tale of a world where teenage girls have the power to inflict great pain with the flick of a poorly painted fingernail. So while she might steal your clothes, ignore your texts and refuse to let you follow her on Instagram, it might just be time to start listening to your teenage daughter.
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