Kelly's Reviews > Good Bones and Simple Murders

Good Bones and Simple Murders by Margaret Atwood
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's review
Oct 12, 2013

really liked it
bookshelves: read-in-2012, reviewed

“The good bones are in here.”

I snagged a used copy of Good Bones and Simple Murders (Margaret Atwood, 1994) on Amazon, whilst shopping around for some of Atwood’s older novels. A slim collection of short stories and poetry, Good Bones is an eclectic mix, with illustrations by the author peppered throughout. The stories cover a little bit of everything: fantasy, mystery, science fiction, speculative fiction, feminism, rape culture, gender wars, dating, death - you name it.

Many of the pieces are hit and miss; my favorites are the scifi stories that hinge on an environmental or animal-friendly theme:

- “Cold-Blooded” - An alien race of matriarchal moth people visit planet earth - or as they call it, “The Planet of the Moths,” a nickname owing to the fact that their moth cousins outnumber us by billions - and find humans sorely lacking in both culture and intelligence;

- “My Life As a Bat” – A series of reflections on the narrator’s past life as a bat, including a disturbing (and, as it just so happens, true) anecdote about WWII-era experiments in which bats were made into unwitting suicide bombers;

- “Hardball” - A piece of dystopian speculative fiction in which humans, having decimated their environment, have retreated to live under a giant dome. Since space is limited, the population must be kept in check: for every birth, one person is chosen to die via a lottery. Care to guess what becomes of the remains?

Also enjoyable are those stories which reimagine classic literature: “Gertrude Talks Back” gives voice to Hamlet’s long-suffering mother, and “Unpopular Gals” and “Let Us Now Praise Stupid Women” celebrates those villains and “airheads” without which fairy tales would not exist.

While at times difficult to read, “Liking Men” is another standout; this is the piece that deals with sexual assault, vis à vis a woman’s journey back to coping with – and even loving – men (or rather, one man in particular) again after her rape.

A must for fans of Margaret Atwood!

(Is there a nickname for us, like HDM’s Sraffies? Atwolytes, maybe? Mad Adams and Angry Eves?)

PS – Dear Margaret: Fishes are indeed animals. Can we please stop pretending otherwise? xoxo – A vegan feminist fan.

http://www.easyvegan.info/2012/05/07/...
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
October 12, 2013 – Shelved
October 12, 2013 – Shelved as: read-in-2012
October 13, 2013 – Shelved as: reviewed

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