The Handmaid's Tale
Extremist Judeo-Christian beliefs have won America's culture war. Now women have no rights. They are slaves to men and the biblical, patriarchal society in which they live. The Handmaid's Tale is the first-person account of one of these enslaved women.
Massachusetts Turns Into Saudi Arabia?
More than thirty years have passed since The Handmaid's Tale was first ...more
Looking back on my original review, it reads as quaint compared to the draconian state laws recently being passed, my state of Ohio being one of them. Make no mistake, this not about ‘life’ it’s about controlling women. If you can’t decide what happens to your own body you do not have freedom. This is about bodily autonomy.
Women have the RIGHT to legal and safe abortions with no qualifications. The fact that the narrative has gone to ‘in cases of rape and incest’ is troubling. ...more
First 100 pages:
Really annoying..why? well because I felt like a juicy bone was being waved in ...more
“Yes, Ma’am, I said again, forgetting. They used to have dolls, for little girls, that would talk if you pulled a string at the back; I thought I was sounding like that, voice of a monotone, voice of a doll. She probably longed to slap my face. They ...more
There are only a small handful of books that have affected me in a REALLY personal way. In a way that I always try to put into words and always, ultimately, fail. I have read a lot of books over the years and I've liked many, disliked plenty too, loved and hated a smaller amount... but out of the thousands I've read, there's less than ten - maybe even less than five, now I think about it - that honestly hit me so hard that I would go so far as to say they changed me.
The Handmaid's Tale is a book ...more
In 1986, when Margaret Atwood published The Handmaid’s Tale, Ronald Regan had declared “Morning in America,” and society was going to renew itself by returning to the old values. The Christian right, in its infancy at the time, was rising in reaction to the Free Love, and the horrors of AIDs. The 1984 election gave us Willie Horton, and a reminder about how violent and evil society had become. Finally, even though Chernobyl happened shortly ...more
Consider it not a commentary on the concept of subjugation of the weak by the ones holding the reins. Consider it not a thinly veiled feminist diatribe either.
Instead, consider The Handmaid's Tale an almost physical experience. Consider Margaret Atwood a fearless deliverer of unpleasant news - a messenger unafraid of dishing out the bone-chilling, cruel, ...more
Claire Danes is a pretty good match for this narrative.
Imagine the near future where power is overtaken by the religious right under the guise of protection from Islamic terrorism. Imagine the future where the roles of the women reduced to those assigned to them in Old Testament - they are no longer allowed to read, work, own property, or handle money. ...more
I am lying awake in my bed. I keep my eyes closed and beg sleep to come. Fruitlessly! Outside, the rain is whipping the windows without mercy. My husband is sleeping next to me, oblivious to my struggle. I need my thoughts to go away. I need to forget that I just finished the Handmaid's Tale and its effect on me. I knew I should have resumed myself to the self-imposed daily quota of 10%. But no. I had to read the last 30 % in one go and now I can't sleep because of it. It’s like a shot ...more
“Nolite te bastardes carborundorum. Don't let the bastards grind you down.”
What can I even say about this masterpiece of a book? What can I even say that hasn't already been said? I'm awed to my core, this book is a prediction, a revelation, a hymn. This book is so fucking old, yet so fucking relatable and ahead of its time... it reads like 1984. The events in this dystopian book seem like such a close reality which scares me for the future of humanity.
I wanted to read this book ...more
We were the people who were not in the papers. We lived in the blank white spaces at the edges of print. It gave us more freedom. We lived in the gaps between the stories.Set in the not-so-distant future, Offred is designated as a Handmaid. Meaning her fertile womb "allows" her to stay in the house of Fred as his legal consort.
(Hence the name "Of Fred" and the not-so-subtle foreshadowing "offered".)
Her alternative? Working in the radioactive wastelands (which would undoubtedly lead to her ...more
I was not able to connect with the Characters in the book at all. It was a task to completely finish this book at all.
I know I am in the minority, but I don't know what all the hype was with this book. I think that Atwood was long winded in her writing style and did not help with the connections with the Characters.
I honestly don't have much more to say about this book.
The account reminds me of, and is probably written trying to somehow emulate, "The Diary of Anne Frank." This new vision of the future is one devoid the female mystique, with only one sex becoming triumphant &) dominating the other. This is misogyny to the nth degree. It ...more
The story centers on the heroine, Offred, who is a "handmaiden" in this futuristic world created by Ms. Atwood. As a handmaiden, Offred's sole purpose is to produce a baby for the Commander and his wife, Serena Joy. Once she has served her ...more
Told with simplistic prose and stark attention to detail, Atwood describes life in the not too distant future where the United States has been transformed through military coup into a totalitarian theocracy. This dystopian horror story is made all the more real by the bridge Atwood has created between the world we know now and the world that could be – the story’s protagonist remembers the time before the ...more
Update in Year One ... No .... It's Already Year Two ... Terrible Two ... Of Dystopia:
As long as you are allowed and capable to read, please do read this novel! In an era when politicians in the Western world are not ashamed to refer to pregnant women as "hosts", deprived of their rights as individuals, we must start speaking up against the steady realisation of dystopian fiction. Let these authors, such as Orwell, Atwood, or Ishiguro, stay great writers of fiction! ...more
(Don't let the bastards grind you down.)
Me, after reading this book: "Meh!"
Because so many of my esteemed Goodreads friends have sung in praise of this novel, I felt that I was destined to join their burgeoning ranks. Instead, I was left scratching my head, wondering if I'd even read the same book!
I was that rarity - an Atwood virgin - and I was knee-tremblingly keen to pop my cherry. I would love to say that I was enthralled and that I am now a fan, but I ...more
It is hard to say that a story like this is "great" as that has a positive connotation. I was very enthralling, but terrifying at the same time. As a man, I don't think this story has as deep of an impact on me as it would if I was a woman.
If you like dystopian, you ...more
There's a lot of talk about women's rights these days. There were times where I thought: enough already. You girls got it good. I looked around me and saw women with strong voices and a million choices. If they wished to go for a career, they could go for it. If they didn't, no biggie. Their liberty seemed greater than men's in a lot of respects. The power they wield over men is magnificent and often described as the greatest humanity is capable of: a ...more
"Better never means better for everyone, he says. It always means worse, for some."
I used to think of my reading taste as predictable. Well, at least a very specific part of my reading taste: namely, there are very few things in the world that I love more than I love dyostopias in the style of 1984 and, above any other, Brave New World ...more
This is by no means an easy read, but I think it's a book that everyone needs to read.
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how can i be so fascinated by this kind of society, but also repulsed by it at the same time?
why do i feel confident that something like this could never happen, but also have a voice in the back of my mind whispering, ‘are you really so sure?’
what makes me want to never ...more
In 2019, I skimmed it again before reading the follow-up, The Testaments (see my review HERE). Gilead no longer feels far-fetched.
Review from 2009
A wonderful hybrid: a book that is eminently readable, but packed with fascinating and thought-provoking ideas and symbolism.
It's set in the near ...more
I’ve read it with the shittiest combination of rage, sadness, fear and paranoia, which stuck with me throughout the entire book. I don’t easily get this emotional. But let me tell you ...more
This was my first adult dystopian novel and also the most realistic one I've read. Scary realistic even. I doubt that the future is ever going to look like this, but Margaret Atwood painted a multi-layered and thought-provoking picture that is going to stay with me for quite a while.
I've never read a Margaret Atwood book before, but I have been eyeing her works for a while now. I just didn't know where to start. The ...more
«We slept in what had once been the gymnasium»
Dystopian sci-fi, set in a future in which the US Government was overthrown in favour of the Republic of Galaad, an oligarchic regime laying down drastic measures to counteract the zero-growth of the world's population. First and foremost, the female subjugation, sired for reproduction.
I decided to read the novel after watching the TV series. I regret to say that without the TV series, I wouldn't understand...more
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Throughout her writing career, Margaret Atwood has received numerous awards and honourary degrees. She is the author of more than thirty-five volumes of poetry, ...more