Caitlin Trepp's Reviews > The Handmaid's Tale

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
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's review
Jul 06, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: bestseller-popular, city-tale, dystopian, feminist, over-rated, self-worth, read-2011, not-young-adult
Recommended for: Fans of Maragaret Atwood or Lois Lowry
Read from October 23 to 25, 2011

I was excited to read this for feminist book club. I tore threw it - it was exciting and fast-paced in a way. At the beginning I was surprised because I expected it (from what I know fo Margaret Atwood) to be realistic fiction, and it is a dystopian. In the middle I thought it seemed like an equally blunt precursor to Bumped, a YA novel with some of the same themes (which also explains the annoying churchies) but with a lighter tone. At the end it reminded me of The Giver. The Handmaid's Tale was one of those books where I thought the ending would redeem it, but far from it, and I ended up enjoying it as much as I enjoyed The Giver, which is to say not much - largely due to the unsatisfying ending. This might be one of the classics that is better or is just more accessible when remade.

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Quotes Caitlin Liked

Margaret Atwood
“Falling in love, we said; I fell for him. We were falling women. We believed in it, this downward motion: so lovely, like flying, and yet at the same time so dire, so extreme, so unlikely. God is love, they once said, but we reversed that, and love, like heaven, was always just around the corner. The more difficult it was to love the particular man beside us, the more we believed in Love, abstract and total. We were waiting, always, for the incarnation. That word, made flesh.

And sometimes it happened, for a time. That kind of love comes and goes and is hard to remember afterwards, like pain. You would look at the man one day and you would think, I loved you, and the tense would be past, and you would be filled with a sense of wonder, because it was such an amazing and precarious and dumb thing to have done; and you would know too why your friends had been evasive about it, at the time.

There is a good deal of comfort, now, in remembering this.”
Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale
tags: love

Margaret Atwood
“Maybe the life I think I'm living is a paranoid delusion...Sanity is a valuable possession; I hoard it the way people once hoarded money. I save it, so I will have enough, when the time comes.”
Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale

Reading Progress

10/23/2011 page 12
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