The Handmaid's Tale

Front Cover
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Feb 17, 1986 - Fiction - 311 pages
432 Reviews
Now a Hulu Original Series

The Handmaid’s Tale is a novel of such power that the reader will be unable to forget its images and its forecast. Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States and is now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men in its population.

The story is told through the eyes of Offred, one of the unfortunate Handmaids under the new social order. In condensed but eloquent prose, by turns cool-eyed, tender, despairing, passionate, and wry, she reveals to us the dark corners behind the establishment’s calm facade, as certain tendencies now in existence are carried to their logical conclusions. The Handmaid’s Tale is funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing. It is at once scathing satire, dire warning, and a tour de force. It is Margaret Atwood at her best.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ToddSherman - LibraryThing

“I feel like cotton candy: sugar and air. Squeeze me and I’d turn into a small sickly damp wad of weeping pinky-red.” So much has been said and will continue to be said about the premise of this novel ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - krau0098 - LibraryThing

I’ve had this book on my TBR pile for quite awhile. I ended up enjoying it. The way things are revealed throughout is cleverly done. I also enjoyed the somewhat wandering story style that reflected ... Read full review

All 24 reviews »

Contents

II Shopping
ii
III Night
35
IV Waiting Room
41
V Nap
67
VI Household
77
VII Night
101
VII Birth Day
107
IX Night
141
XII Jezebels
197
XIII Night
257
XIV Salvaging
265
XV Night
289
Back Matter
297
Back Flap
313
Back Cover
314
Spine
315

X Soul Scrolls
149
XI Night
189

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About the author (1986)

MARGARET ATWOOD is the author of more than forty books of fiction, poetry, and critical essays. In addition to The Handmaid’s Tale (now a Hulu series) her novels include The Blind Assassin (winner of the Booker Prize), Alias Grace (winner of the Giller Prize in Canada and the Premio Mondello in Italy), The Robber Bride, Cat’s Eye, The Penelopiad, The Heart Goes Last, and Hag-Seed, a novel revisitation of Shakespeare’s play The Tempest, for the Hogarth Shakespeare Project. Her latest book of short stories is Stone Mattress: Nine Tales.  She is also the author of the graphic novel Angel Cat­bird (with cocreator Johnnie Christmas). Margaret Atwood lives in Toronto with writer Graeme Gibson.
 

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