Read The PowerBook by Jeanette Winterson Free Online
Book Title: The PowerBook|
The author of the book: Jeanette Winterson
ISBN 13: 9780375411113
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 21.15 MB
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Loaded: 2283 times
Reader ratings: 4.8
Date of issue: October 24th 2000
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While many other novels are still nursing hangovers from the 20th century, The PowerBook has risen early to greet the challenge of the new millennium. Set in cyberspace, Jeanette Winterson's seventh novel (or eighth, if you count her disowned Boating for Beginners) travels with ease, casting the net of its love story over Paris, Capri, and London. Its interactive narrator, Ali, is a "language costumier" who will swathe your imagination in the clothes of transformation: all you have to do is decide whom you want to be. Ali--known also as Alix--is a virtual narrator in a networked world of e-writing. You are the reader, invited to inhabit the story--any story--you wish to be told. As in all the best video games, you can choose your location, your character, even the clothes you want to wear. Beware: you can enter and play, but you cannot determine the outcome.
Ali/x is a digital Orlando for the modern age, moving across time and through transmutations of identity, weaving her stories with "long lines of laptop DNA" and shaping herself to the reader's desire. She wants to make love as simple as a song, but even in cyberspace there is no love without pain. Ali/x offers a stranger on the other side of the screen the opportunity of freedom for one night. She falls in love with her beautiful stranger, and finds herself reinvented by her own story.
The PowerBook is rich with historical allegory and literary allusion. Winterson's dialogue crackles with humor, snappy dialogue, and good jokes, several of which are at her own expense. This is a world of disguise, boundary crossing, and emotional diversions that change the navigation of the plot of life. Strangely sprouting tulips are erected in place of the phallus. Husbands and wives are uncoupled. Lovers disappear in the night to escape from themselves. On the hard drive of The PowerBook are stored a variety of stories that the reader can download and open at will, complete stories that loop through the central narrative. The tale of Mallory's third expedition, the disinterring of the Roman Governor of London in Spitalfields Church, or the contemplation of "great and ruinous lovers" are capsules of narrative compression. In Winterson's compacted meaning, language becomes a character in its own right--it is one of the heroes of the novel.
"What I am seeking to do in my work is to make a form that answers to 21st-century needs," Winterson has written. The PowerBook does just that. Her prose has found a metaphor for its linguistic forms of creation that feels almost invented for her, "a web of coordinates that will change the world." There will be a virtual rush of Internet-themed books in the networked naughties. With The PowerBook Winterson has triumphantly gotten there first. --Rachel Holmes
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Read information about the authorNovelist Jeanette Winterson was born in Manchester, England in 1959. She was adopted and brought up in Accrington, Lancashire, in the north of England. Her strict Pentecostal Evangelist upbringing provides the background to her acclaimed first novel, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, published in 1985. She graduated from St Catherine's College, Oxford, and moved to London where she worked as an assistant editor at Pandora Press.
One of the most original voices in British fiction to emerge during the 1980s, Jeanette Winterson was named as one of the 20 'Best of Young British Writers' in a promotion run jointly between the literary magazine Granta and the Book Marketing Council.
Her novels include Boating for Beginners (1985), published shortly after Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit and described by the author as 'a comic book with pictures'; The Passion (1987), twin narratives following the adventures of the web-footed daughter of a Venetian gondolier and Napoleon's chicken chef; Sexing the Cherry (1989), an invented world set during the English Civil War featuring the fabulous 'Dog Woman' and the orphan she raises; and three books exploring triangular relationships, gender and formal experimentation: Written on the Body (1992), Art and Lies (1994) and Gut Symmetries (1997). She is also the author of a collection of short stories, The World and Other Places (1998), and a book of essays about art and culture, Art Objects, published in 1995.
Her novel The Power Book (2000) she adapted for the National Theatre in 2002. Jeanette Winterson's work is published in 28 countries. Her latest novel is The Battle of the Sun (2009). She has also edited Midsummer Nights (2009), a collection of stories inspired by opera, by contemporary writers, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Glyndebourne Festival of Opera.
She adapted Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit for BBC television in 1990, and also wrote Great Moments in Aviation, a television screenplay directed by Beeban Kidron for BBC2 in 1994. She is also editor of a series of new editions of novels by Virginia Woolf published in the UK by Vintage. She is a regular contributor of reviews and articles to many newspapers and journals and has a regular column published in The Guardian. Her radio drama includes the play Text Message, broadcast by BBC Radio in November 2001.
The King of Capri (2003) and Tanglewreck (2006) are children's stories. Lighthousekeeping (2004), centres on the orphaned heroine Silver, taken in by the keeper of the Cape Wrath lighthouse, Mr Pew, whose stories of love and loss, passion and longing, are interwoven in the narrative. Her most recent book is The Battle of the Sun (2009).
Jeanette Winterson lives in Gloucestershire and London. In 2006, she was awarded an OBE.
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