Title: The Handmaid’s Tale
Author: Margaret Atwood
Offred is a Handmaid. She lives in a world where women are no longer allowed to read, and when she is allowed leave from the Commander’s home she must collect groceries in stores that use pictures as labels instead of words. As a Handmaid, she is expected to copulate with the Commander and hope for a baby, since that is her purpose.
But, she can remember before hand, when she had a child of her own, a husband, a job and when she was allowed to wear the clothes she wanted. Now, she wears her Handmaid’s uniform and a white cap that acts as a blinker, focusing her vision only on the path ahead.
This dystopian novel describes and eerie world where women have little to no rights – a world that is very different to our own, but also scarily similar.
First of all, I’m writing this review for a competition at my sixth form college, in the hopes of winning an Amazon giftcard to fund my book habit!
When I first began reading The Handmaid’s Tale a year ago, I found it hard to get into, but I was willing to give it another try for my AS Literature course. It has proved a thoroughly enjoyable novel, whilst also offering plenty of talking points for my Wider Reading, which is handy for my exam! Bonus!
I found that the novel was very descriptive and eloquent, and very different to the other dystopian novels floating around today. The novel uses certain chapters, simply entitled ‘Night’, to reminisce about her life before the takeover of America happened, when she was free and had her own daughter.
Now, she has been left to wonder about the current states of her child and husband, which throughout the novel is made heart-wrenching and affecting.
The novel was particularly profound; it is the type of novel that makes you think about the world around you, as well as telling a captivating story. The ending is left ambiguous, but the reader can guess as to what has happened to the protagonist.
All in all, I enjoyed The Handmaid’s Tale very much, and I think I will be reading more novels by Margaret Atwood in the future!