Sunday, May 20, 2007

Dystopian Challenge: Book 3: The Handmaid's Tale

I feel like I'm cheating on the Dystopian Challenge because I would have been reading all these books anyway. It's like it's too easy. I really think I might finish this challenge, and that means it'll be the first challenge I EVER completed.

So, the Handmaid's Tale. Wow. I loved this book. I'm now a huge Margaret Atwood fan. Well, I guess I should read a few more before declaring that. I did read Oryx and Crake a few years ago and really liked that. I'm not going to summarize the book anymore than to say that it's the story of a new society built on top of an old one, one we know very well. For more info, see 3M's and Jen Robinson's reviews.

The book is written very anthropologically, as the main character describes her life in the new society as compared with her old, normal life. And by this method, she describes the way the society works as well. The language is beautiful in its simplicity. The writing style is very appealing to me. It was a treat to read this book after The Postman which I read just for plot. With The Handmaid's Tale, I enjoyed the riveting, fascinating story and the intriguing characters, as well as the literary qualities of the writing. It was also fun to guess the setting by reading for clues. In the beginning, there are a few subtle clues that led me to believe I knew where it took place and then towards the end there are more direct clues that affirmed my guess was correct.

Super highly recommended, whether you're into dystopians or not.


Blogger nomadshan said...

Glad you enjoyed it! I liked guessing the setting, too, and had an "Oh! Duh!" moment when I realized how she'd been named.

9:36 PM  
Anonymous Camille said...

Yeah, I think she chose names like Fred, Warren, and Glen because they're not usually ones you hear every day like Tom or Mike, you know? So it wouldn't be too obvious.

10:39 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Loved it too. It scared me! I did Oryx and Crake for the challenge since I had already read this one.

2:33 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

I loved this book! I read it a couple of years ago. But it really did scare the bejesus out of me!!

2:35 PM  
Blogger BettyBetty said...

Wow can't wait to read - added it to the list---she wrote Cat's Eye too right?

9:37 PM  
Anonymous Camille said...

Chris and Stephanie--Yes, totally scary! I kept thinking how horrifying this would be if it happened to all of us today.

Bettybetty--Definitely do read it. I couldn't put it down. Yes, she did write Cat's Eye, which I didn't know about until you just mentioned it. That looks good, too. I'm pretty new to Margaret Atwood but I'll be reading more after this.

10:15 PM  
Anonymous danielle said...

I think I have read this book at least three times, and I could still read it again. I think this is one challenge I might be able to finish, too--though I didn't join. I am drawn to these types of books as well. Which other titles have you read and will you be reading?

10:41 AM  
Blogger Camille said...

Danielle-You are the one who recommended Z for Zachariah to me and I loved it. I have also read A Canticle for Leibowitz and The Postman so far. I'm working on re-reading Fahrenheit 451 and then I'll read Children of Men and possibly The Road.

1:48 PM  
Anonymous Annie said...

I've read this book so many times, but it's not my favorite Margaret Atwood.

If you need any more dystopian recommendations, I really love Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go--

1:52 PM  

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