The Handmaid's Tale

The Handmaid's Tale (1991, Fawcett Crest)

Mass Market Paperback, 395 pages

English language

Published Dec. 14, 1991 by Fawcett Crest.

ISBN:
9780449212608
OCLC Number:
15091789

View on OpenLibrary

4 stars (20 reviews)

IN THE WORLD OF THE NEAR FUTURE, WHO WILL CONTROL WOMEN'S BODIES?

Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable.

Offred can remember the years before, when she lived and made love with her husband Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now... everything has changed. --back cover

48 editions

The Handmaid's Tale

4 stars

The Republic of Gilead is a military regime based on fundamentalist Christian values. There's no place for freedom, for choice, for self determination. Women in particular have been stripped of all their rights and are divided into castes. The narrator and main character, Offred, is a Handmaid and her only function is to breed. This is a very good novel, and a pretty scary one, considering how the rights of women, particularly reproductive rights, are constantly under attack by the religious fundamentalists and right-wing politicians. The dystopian society depicted in this book is far too plausible, at least in some of its elements...

Review of "The Handmaid's Tale" on 'GoodReads'

4 stars

Started off a little slow.... but the book really grabbed me about halfway through. I think I read the last 150 pages of the book in one sitting. Really interesting exploration of mono-theocracies and the social implications they bring. Not quite sci-fi, but definitely dystopian. I really enjoyed piecing together the new world of 'Gilead' based upon the bits of information Offred knew. Very unique twist to the 1984 and Brave New World versions of the future we've seen over and over again.

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