5,204 book reviews and counting...

I Who Have Never Known Men Reviews

I Who Have Never Known Men by Jacqueline Harpman

I Who Have Never Known Men

Jacqueline Harpman

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publication date: 2 May 2019
ISBN: 9781529111798

'A small miracle' The New York Times`For a very long time, the days went by, each just like the day before, then I began to think, and everything changed'Deep underground, thirty-nine women live imprisoned in a cage.

4 stars out of 5
12 Jun 2019

"The survival of hope through ingenuity"

Following the narrator’s learning curve is a consistently gripping experience, and the manner in which she maps her world is creatively weaved through both language and a suspenseful plot – a continually surprising trajectory that starts when she leaves the cage. However, while the idealization of men serves the purpose of awakening the narrator to her own power, it is a pity that the women who do enter into relationships with each other are only described as doing so in a default reaction to a lack of men.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5
Lucy Scholes
4 May 2019

"There’s a mini-boom in dystopian fiction, but this novel stands out"

Jacqueline Harpman’s I Who Have Never Known Men is a novel haunted by absences and loss. It is never explained how the women came to be in the cage and we are left none the wiser as to who’s responsible for their imprisonment, or why or for what purpose they are being held. The strange confusion of the barren world Jacqueline Harpman creates in this eerily evocative novel is also all the more acute because the narrator is in a state of ignorance.