Customer Reviews for

The Power of One

Average Rating 4
( 227 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(152)

4 Star

(26)

3 Star

(17)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(26)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Amazing

I had a project in my World History class, we were required to read a historical fiction novel. I never really read much historical fiction books. I just so happen to find this book at Barnes & Nobles and read all the great reviews about it. At first glance this looked ...
I had a project in my World History class, we were required to read a historical fiction novel. I never really read much historical fiction books. I just so happen to find this book at Barnes & Nobles and read all the great reviews about it. At first glance this looked like the size of my algebra text book. But after the first chapter I was hooked. I had to know more, I had to keep going. I couldn't put the book down! This novel following Peekay to when he is 5, until he is free from the Judge, and all the people he met, the lives he changed, and the lives he would touch. I really don't know what to say about this book, other than it capturing my imagination and almost making me tear up at parts. I'm 15, rather short, and asian. At times I could almost relate to what Peekay felt. This novel is just so powerful, in feelings and emotional. It almost reaches out and pulls you into it. Though whe i reached the last few pages, I got really upset because it was about to end. I didn't want it to end... 'First with the head then with the heart' -Hoppie

posted by Anonymous on March 22, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

49 out of 49 people found this review helpful.

Wrong Book

I am posting this as a warning to those purchasing this Nook book. I was hoping to purchase the original The Power of One and ended up with the Young Reader's Condensed version. I have no interest in the Young Reader's version, and the original does not appear to be ava...
I am posting this as a warning to those purchasing this Nook book. I was hoping to purchase the original The Power of One and ended up with the Young Reader's Condensed version. I have no interest in the Young Reader's version, and the original does not appear to be available for the Nook. The description does not state that it is the condensed version. I am very disappointed. Beware when you purchase this for your Nook!

posted by ml1033 on May 15, 2011

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  • Posted June 10, 2011

    Misleading+purchase

    Just+realized+that+what+you+get+on+the+Nook+is+a+young+reader%27s+edition.+I+would+much+prefer+to+be+reading+the+whole+thing.+I%27m+about+half+way+through%2C+so+I+don%27t+want+to+stop+reading%2C+but+I+feel+cheated.+No+complaints+about+the+text%2C+just+about+this+version+and+that+it+was+not+stated+anywhere.

    15 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2011

    Stereotypes and soap opera

    All the positive reviews here leave me stunned since I thought this was easily one of the most overrated and simplistic novels I've ever read. After a reasonably strong and interesting beginning it got stuck in a one-note rut and was just hard to finish. The book is billed as a triumph of the human spirit over adversity, but aside from the initial hardship at school when Peekay is a small English student among some cruel Boers what adversity is there? OK, he's poor, has no father and his mother is a Jesus freak. But he's also white in South Africa, a near genius, has no flaws, never loses a single boxing match and is surrounded by loving, supportive people who are willing to spend seemingly endless amounts of time nurturing and educating him. There is none of the real-life tension that comes from overcoming hardship, or dealing with one's own weaknesses. Courtenay, to his credit, consistently attacks bigotry, be it against blacks, Indians or Jews (although sexism gets only occasional mention). But aside from the inmate who teaches Peekay to box Courtenay doesn't develop a single non-white character. In fact most of the blacks in the book are one-dimensional, almost caricatures of the "noble savage", who do not develop their own leadership against apartheid as happened historically. (The book extends into the 1950s when the ANC and organizers like Nelson Mandela became a potent force, but that doesn't get a mention.) Instead the blacks literally worship this white student whose main role in the bitter struggle against apartheid seems to come from providing some kind of inexplicable, mystical inspiration, which not surprisingly never rings remotely true. The black workers, as portrayed by Courtenay, are incapable of fighting for themselves, but have to rely on the generosity and leadership of whites. Courtenay does give descriptions of the brutality against blacks in prison and the workplace, which can be gripping, but in fact spends a lot more time on the tension between the English and the Boers, the "white tribes", than he does in exposing the horrors of apartheid. Peekay, pointlessly not given a real name, in the end is a one-dimensional, larger than life character who's not believable, and Courtenay doesn't muddy the waters with anything real such as weaknesses, mistakes, genuine hardship, or curiously even love or sex. And his final symbol of the triumph over racism-the English Union Jack superceding the swastika-ignores the struggle of the oppressed black majority. It's a stretch but I can give the book only two stars, one for the anti-racism and one for the effort, but as a strong piece of fiction about South Africa, pass Courtenay by and get to Athol Fugard, Nadine Gordimer, or Zakes Mda.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 6, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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