Author Margaret Atwood
Publication Date March 16th 1998
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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...
The Handmaid’s Tale is an incredible novel that everyone should read. This shocking tale explains the consequences of religious extremism gone too far. As the reader, you are left with an impression of confusion and continual questioning. In the world that we are accustomed to, religious persecution is minimal. Books like this help us to realize what can happen when power falls into the wrong hands. It presents an interesting commentary of the sexual and intellectual consequences a society faces when it oppresses and restricts the roles of women. I found this novel both intriguing and eye-opening. It is a quick read, drawing you immediately to the bizarre world and situation.