The Testaments / Margaret Atwood

Is it weird to love the world of the Handmaids Tale? I don’t consider myself a dark, tormented kind of person. Is that my lack of self-awareness?

Or is it just that Margaret Atwood touches on the bondage of the female gender in a way that is so easily connectable? Whether its the loss of autonomy, what it means to bear children, assault, being objectified, commoditized – if you have lady bits or associated with the female persuasion you can relate to most (ALL) of this dystopian universe. Plus our current political chaos sure does make this book terrifyingly relevant.

That relevance Atwood was smart enough to seize upon. Listen, all of you people rolling your eyes and muttering sell out need to C-H-I-L-L. If I were an author I would do the same thing. Also, if you were a fan of the book there is absolutely no way you weren’t clamoring for Atwood to further flesh out the Handmaid world in a way only she could do, and not through what has been presented on the Hulu Series (which I also LOVE!).

In The Testaments, Atwood takes on this world through a different lens. The story picks up more than 15 years where we left off, you know dangling from that Offred cliffhanger. The format of this book is a bit different. Rather than returning to Offred’s account of America’s demise, we hear the testaments of three female narrators from Gilead.

“We’re stretched thin, all of us; we vibrate; we quiver, we’re always on the alert. Reign of terror, they used to say, but terror does not exactly reign. Instead it paralyzes. Hence the unnatural quiet.”

Margaret Atwood

I went into this book not knowing the structure, and for that I am glad. I think I would have been disappointed had I known the format and lack of Offred’s voice going into it. That being said, I devoured this book and loved every morsel.

These three separate voices where each uniquely crafted and all had strength in their story. The combination of these different perspectives really fleshed out where Gilead began and now stood as well as its impact on the world around it. It also begs us to reflect on who really is the true villain as these perspectives lend sympathy to those we would have previously written off as pure evil.

5 stars – ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ – If you couldn’t tell, I’m a HUGE fan of Margaret Atwood. She is in my top 5 of all-time favorite authors. I was beyond excited for this book and if you were a fan of The Handmaids Tale, or you like the show and are curious to delve a bit further into the dark crevices of Gilead, then I would highly recommend this book.

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