The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood - Margaret Atwood

The Handmaid's Tale

The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood Book Score: 4.5 0 5
4.5 star
4,824 Ratings

The Handmaid's Tale Book Summary

Before The Testaments, there was The Handmaid’s Tale: an instant classic and eerily prescient cultural phenomenon, from “the patron saint of feminist dystopian fiction” (New York Times).

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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The Handmaid's Tale Book Comments


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The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood Book Reviews

  • A good read. (jilirious)

    I was very happy with this book. At first, it struggled to keep my interest, but as I kept reading I found myself obsessively turning the pages—which hasn’t happened in a long time. As a woman, this book was very powerful, and opened up a lot of different thoughts. I would recommend this book, and I am looking forward to watching the movie/series adaptation.
  • The Handmaid’s Tale- A good read (Mrs. Cassie)

    This book was an easy read as it kept my interest throughout. As a fan of the Hulu series of the same name, I must say their is much that happens in the series that does not happen in the book. For instance, many characters, such as Nick, Luke, Moira and Janine, are overly-glamorized and play larger roles in the series. We often see episodes focusing on these characters points of view whereas the book revolves around the one central character, Offred, and the story is told from strictly her perspective. Many quotes from Offred in the series come from within the book’s pages. The story does leave some loose ends untied and leaves the reader with the option to interpret the ending in different ways. All in all a great read!
  • Review of the Handmaids Tale (hi...04)

    This is an amazing dystopian book, that truly showcases in gruesome detail what happens when the majority are the oppressed. It shows that no matter the conditions people still try their best to hold on to hope and to persevere.
  • Nnnninnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnunnnnnnnunnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnunnnnnunnnnnnnnnnunnnnnnnnnnn (vbbbbv bbv v)

    Mmooooooh vvvbv. B.B.vbvbv B.B. a bbvbv vvvbvvvvvbv viernes B.B.vvvvvvv
  • yes (Dhbdhddn)

    .
  • the ending (hdkxosbsk)

    has mE SHOOK
  • The Handmaids Tale Again (brennansgranmom)

    I read Atwood’s book when it was originally published. Hearing that a sequel was now being written had caused me to re-read this suspenseful novel. I like the authors reimagining what life could be like so far in the future. It was believable and related well to current events. I am so looking forward to the sequel as it is long overdue. More “historical” background would have been helpful in understanding the regime. There weren’t quite enough political and cultural details to rate this novel a five and yet; a compelling story!
  • I really wanted to like this book (HappyFoo321)

    I love the message, I don’t think it’s some sort of “feminist propaganda” (eyeroll) but I couldn’t get over the writing. The metaphors and similes seemed overdone, to the point where she’d be describing a staircase and by the end of the sentence I had to reread it to remember what she was talking about in the first place. I can get over a few examples of that, but it seemed like the entire book was one long sentence with too many commas and muddy comparisons. It reminded me of trying to fill a word count for a school assignment.
  • Future #MeToo? (BrerBearPlace)

    Eerily voyeuristic 1980’s sci-fi masterpiece that reflects incredible insight into our society today in 2018, especially the male chauvinistic, white supremacist political precipice from which we hang in terror, right now...
  • Feminist propaganda (Amy Meditate)

    It's amazing that I even need to point this out. And now it's being pushed to an extreme extent in the series. This is creating a war between men and women that is extremely dangerous. Third wave feminism is a cancer to society. Pleas do not support these dangerous ideas with a purchase.
  • jilirious
    4 stars
    A good read.. I was very happy with this book. At first, it struggled to keep my interest, but as I kept reading I found myself obsessively turning the pages—which hasn’t happened in a long time. As a woman, this book was very powerful, and opened up a lot of different thoughts. I would recommend this book, and I am looking forward to watching the movie/series adaptation.
  • Mrs. Cassie
    4 stars
    The Handmaid’s Tale- A good read. This book was an easy read as it kept my interest throughout. As a fan of the Hulu series of the same name, I must say their is much that happens in the series that does not happen in the book. For instance, many characters, such as Nick, Luke, Moira and Janine, are overly-glamorized and play larger roles in the series. We often see episodes focusing on these characters points of view whereas the book revolves around the one central character, Offred, and the story is told from strictly her perspective. Many quotes from Offred in the series come from within the book’s pages. The story does leave some loose ends untied and leaves the reader with the option to interpret the ending in different ways. All in all a great read!
  • hi...04
    5 stars
    Review of the Handmaids Tale. This is an amazing dystopian book, that truly showcases in gruesome detail what happens when the majority are the oppressed. It shows that no matter the conditions people still try their best to hold on to hope and to persevere.
  • vbbbbv bbv v
    3 stars
    Nnnninnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnunnnnnnnunnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnunnnnnunnnnnnnnnnunnnnnnnnnnn. Mmooooooh vvvbv. B.B.vbvbv B.B. a bbvbv vvvbvvvvvbv viernes B.B.vvvvvvv
  • Dhbdhddn
    5 stars
    yes. .
  • hdkxosbsk
    5 stars
    the ending. has mE SHOOK
  • brennansgranmom
    4 stars
    The Handmaids Tale Again. I read Atwood’s book when it was originally published. Hearing that a sequel was now being written had caused me to re-read this suspenseful novel. I like the authors reimagining what life could be like so far in the future. It was believable and related well to current events. I am so looking forward to the sequel as it is long overdue. More “historical” background would have been helpful in understanding the regime. There weren’t quite enough political and cultural details to rate this novel a five and yet; a compelling story!
  • HappyFoo321
    2 stars
    I really wanted to like this book. I love the message, I don’t think it’s some sort of “feminist propaganda” (eyeroll) but I couldn’t get over the writing. The metaphors and similes seemed overdone, to the point where she’d be describing a staircase and by the end of the sentence I had to reread it to remember what she was talking about in the first place. I can get over a few examples of that, but it seemed like the entire book was one long sentence with too many commas and muddy comparisons. It reminded me of trying to fill a word count for a school assignment.
  • BrerBearPlace
    5 stars
    Future #MeToo?. Eerily voyeuristic 1980’s sci-fi masterpiece that reflects incredible insight into our society today in 2018, especially the male chauvinistic, white supremacist political precipice from which we hang in terror, right now...
  • Amy Meditate
    1 stars
    Feminist propaganda. It's amazing that I even need to point this out. And now it's being pushed to an extreme extent in the series. This is creating a war between men and women that is extremely dangerous. Third wave feminism is a cancer to society. Pleas do not support these dangerous ideas with a purchase.
  • Purebull
    5 stars
    The Handmaid’s Tale. Chilling look at the future through the future-past-now. Help us all. Is this even possible? Stark. Hope this Wall never gets built. Prescient fake news!
  • {Dunkirk}
    1 stars
    Crap. Do not read. Disgusting and vile!
  • MommaMira
    5 stars
    Recommend, recommend, recommend!!!. This novel has it all: Love, hate, lust, greed, and chaos. Margaret gives us a vision of a world that could very much be our future. It’s all too realistic concepts touch base close to home. You won’t be disappointed in this read. It’s absolutely one of my favorites!!!!
  • Bargie De
    4 stars
    The Handmaid’s Tale. Horrible waste of time!
  • Ashley Hollywood
    5 stars
    EhAshleyimbert. Extremely captivating
  • Christal Doll
    5 stars
    Brilliantly Written. I really enjoyed this book and the series.
  • LindaAlamo
    4 stars
    Needed more.... This was the scariest book I ever read because it fits the rise of the "evangelical" base in our last two and a half decades of politics. The constant attics on women's rights and the belief that subservience is biblically ratified. The end was wrapped up too quickly. Needed more.
  • Mugurllollipop1234838
    5 stars
    Life changing. I just love this book.
  • The Handmaid's Tale
    4 stars
    Very Nice. A well written Novel.
  • Jobo238
    5 stars
    Moving. I'm not sure how I feel about this book. It was enthralling, even though it took me awhile to get acclimated to what was happening. But it made me so sad & a little mad, afraid. It reads like a cautionary tale, a warning; be wary of extremists. The end caught me by surprise- I was expecting more of the story. I would definitely recommend this book, it's well-written & you definitely can connect with the main characters. But it's not a 'light' book or fun book; it's a deep book, a moving book. Enjoy!

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