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review 2020-06-01 14:19
The Handmaids Tale
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood

by Margaret Atwood

 

My first impression of this book was that it reminded me of Anne Frank's diary, writing in journal form about an oppressive situation in which the person writing must survive. Considering it was first released in 1985, the present tense writing that continued caught me off guard. It was unusual before the self-pub explosion in 2010.

 

The tale shows a future society where the freedoms we take for granted have been removed and women in particular are assigned roles and expected to conform to them, including providing babies for couples in more privileged positions but unable to produce their own. Citizens spy on each other and dissention makes people disappear.

 

We are never given the main character's real name because women are referred to by their captain's name; Offred, Ofwarren, etc. She has flashbacks to how life was 'before' that identify this as a society that took over what we would recognise as modern Western life. She misses a lover whose fate she does not know and a child they had together who was taken from her. There is occasional mention of a war, but details are slow to be revealed.

 

I found the story continually depressing. Obviously the whole point is that no one would want to live in such an oppressive world and it was interesting to see how some women managed to adapt, though many didn't. The change is still first generation and those in charge insist the next generation will find the new society perfectly natural, as they've never known anything else.

 

I saw some parallels with American black slavery in that children were taken away from parents with no sympathy for the mother's sense of loss. Also in that deviating from what was considered accepted behaviour resulted in physical punishment or even death.

 

What I found most interesting is that the men weren't enjoying the restrictions on themselves either. Human nature was never meant to be regimented.

 

I found the ending... tedious. An attempt by the author to be clever that fell flat and some essential unanswered questions. I'm glad I've read this now, but even more glad that I don't have to read it again.

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text 2020-04-03 06:32
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
The Penelopiad - Margaret Atwood

Wow, towards the end I really got slapped on the head by the feminist message of this book. And I´m afraid, I didn´t like it. And the chorus parts with the maids and the allusions to modern day times throughout this book really annoyed me.

 

So in short, this book clearly didn´t work for me.

 

  

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review 2020-03-24 15:40
The Door - Margaret Atwood

Some of the poems are absolutely lovely - like the Owl and the Pussycoat homage or the poem about Joan of Arc. Some, quite frankly, could have been shorter.

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review 2020-03-11 22:30
THE HANDMAID'S TALE by Margaret Atwater, narrated by Claire Danes
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood,Claire Danes

Finally, I've read this!

 

I had high expectations for this book, and it didn't quite live up to them, but it came pretty close.

 

At times, I was outraged and at other times, I was just sad. Mostly because I see the seeds of some of this book's attitudes in our day to day lives now.

 

I will admit that I was pissed off at how this ended-but I will still read the second book.

 

*I bought this audiobook with my hard earned cash.*

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text 2020-03-06 13:30
#FridayReads 3.6.2020
The Deep - Alma Katsu
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
Fear of Free Standing Objects: A Collection - Doug Rinaldi

#FridayReads Today, I'm halfway through THE DEEP by @almakatsu. I'm still reading FEAR OF FREE STANDING OBJECTS: A COLLECTION by Doug Rinaldi and I'm listening to THE HANDMAID'S TALE, SPECIAL EDITION, by Margaret Atwood. What are you reading? pic.twitter.com/m2WkdLIDnK

— Char's Horror Corner
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