The Republic of Gilead offers Offred only one function: to breed. If she deviates, she will, like dissenters, be hanged at the wall or sent out to die slowly of radiation sickness. But even a repressive state cannot obliterate desire – neither Offred’s nor that of the two men on which her future hangs.
Brilliantly conceived and executed, this powerful evocation of twenty-first-century America gives full rein to Margaret Atwood’s devastating irony, wit and astute perception.
After reading The Blind Assassin, I made a false judgment, thinking that I would possibly love everything that Atwood wrote. However, this wasn’t true in the case of The Handmaid’s Tale.
Even though it would slow to start, and filled with descriptions of things that didn’t need describing, I sailed through. Almost halfway through the book, I realized that I cannot read something which is so bland when it comes to action.
I had really wanted to like this book, and I did like it. In a way it was a dark, mysterious and gory; a tale of women’s exploration, and the parallels to the real contemporary world made all the more chilling.
The most startling aspect however is that this was published in 1998, and almost 20 years later, women can still relate to what she’s trying to say.
I wasn’t expecting an ending, but the end was better than I had anticipated.
I can’t really say that this book isn’t worth reading, because I liked it, but maybe my hopes were too high. If I’d gone without reading the reviews and the hype for Atwood, I would’ve liked it better.
It does deliver, just not the delivery I wanted.
– Painting Stories.