Summary and book reviews of Turning On The Girls by Cheryl Benard

Turning On The Girls

A Novel

by Cheryl Benard

Turning On The Girls by Cheryl Benard X
Turning On The Girls by Cheryl Benard
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Feb 2001, 256 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 2002, 335 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

Cheryl Benard's deftly comic novel gives us a chance to envision a world designed by women.... It's 2000 something, the world has just been taken over by women, and things are wonderful. Meanwhile, a secret men's movement, is planning a violent uprising.

It's 2000 something, the world has just been taken over by women, and things are wonderful, or at least they will be just as soon as the new rulers finish fixing things. And here's Lisa, a dedicated young employee of the new government, ready to do her part. Why does she have stacks of pornography, love stories, and romance novels on her desk? Well, that's her job! To come up with politically correct sexual fantasies for women. No more lovesick simpering, no more masochistic daydreams! Women are going to learn to be turned on by healthier, more dignified fantasies -- just as soon as Lisa can come up with some. And if you think that sounds like a fun assignment, why don't you try it. Don't tell her boss, but Lisa's pretty much totally stuck!

Fortunately, she has her trusty assistant, Justin. He's about to graduate from the Revolution's men's reeducation program, and he's willing to do whatever it takes to make this project a success. Working in the Ministry for all of these very serious ladies can wear a guy out, but Justin keeps himself entertained with a private project of his own: to investigate whether, contrary to appearances, liberated women actually do have a sense of humor.

Meanwhile, not all men are pleased with this kinder, gentler world. Harmony, a secret men's movement, is planning a violent uprising to put women back in their place. Lisa and Justin are recruited by security forces to infiltrate Harmony. Before long they find themselves in Zone Six -- where the un-reformable men reside -- on the run, trying to save the world as they know it.

Cheryl Benard's deftly comic novel gives us a chance to envision a world designed by women and to reflect on how such a world would differ from our own.

Excerpt
Turning On The Girls

Lisa returns to her office, fifteen minutes late and not very happy. Pushing aside a stack of books and slumping into the chair, she locates her prompter. She stares at her compuscreen and at the paragraph she was working on before lunch; no, it has not miraculously turned brilliant during her absence. She picks up a book from the side table; it is a copy of Pauline Réage, Story of O. Lisa throws it hard, it flies forward and hits the door. Being a paperback, it fails to make the kind of satisfying thud that a hardback would, but even so it has made a noise, and the door opens. A young man sticks his head in, inquiringly. "Coffee?" he asks.

Okay, time out, I need an introduction and I might as well put it here. The first thing you have to know is that, in my story, women have just taken over the world.

My main character is going to be Lisa, whom you have just met, and she will work for the Ministry of Thought, Department of Values and ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
  • award image

Reviews

Media Reviews

Publisher's Weekly
[A] rollicking good novel.... Deeper than a mere what-if fantasy, this contra-Atwoodesque social fiction may satirize political correctness, but it also manages to salute present and future feminist triumphs, albeit in roundabout fashion.... this book will succeed primarily through word of mouth, of which there will be plenty.

Kirkus Reviews
Futuristic satire with a scattershot approach Benard (Moghul Buffet, 1998) targets everything from goddess worship and holistic healing to the self-righteous excesses of 1970s-style feminism, enlivening her somewhat cerebral style with plenty of erotic snippets.

Reader Reviews

Angela

Comedic Relief!
This book is great for us older, tired feminists as well as the young daring ones, and any and all who think that we can make a better world than the one we have. So much "education" without even knowing it! Laughter is good for the soul! ...   Read More

go2yourlibrary
Our discussion about this book was really good! Half our members thought this book was hilarious--funny!! witty!! a comment on society!! The other half of the group thought it insulting, patronizing and sexist.
Character and plot certainly added to ...   Read More

go2yourlibrary
Our bookclub, Words And Flava, has decided to read this book for our August selection. We will let you know how our discussion goes!

Write your own review!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

More books by Cheryl Benard

If you liked Turning On The Girls, try these:

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member
Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes

Books with similar themes


Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Small Fry
    Small Fry
    by Lisa Brennan-Jobs
    Small Fry is the debut memoir from Lisa Brennan-Jobs, long-time journalist and writer, and oldest ...
  • Book Jacket: The Winter Soldier
    The Winter Soldier
    by Daniel Mason
    Imagine the thousands of confounding cases doctors face routinely for which diagnoses are hard to ...
  • Book Jacket: Brother
    Brother
    by David Chariandy
    Brother is the brief, moving account of how a single, tragic moment in time can alter the course of ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Islamic Enlightenment
    by Christopher de Bellaigue
    In this comprehensive and well-researched history, de Bellaigue examines the evolution of Islamic ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Ninth Hour by Alice McDermott

A crowning achievement of one of the finest American writers at work today.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Sold on a Monday
    by Kristina McMorris

    An unforgettable novel inspired by a stunning piece of history.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Clockmaker's Daughter

The Clockmaker's Daughter by Kate Morton

A rich, spellbinding new novel from the author of The Lake House. On sale Oct 9.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T Turn T S

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.