What does a woman say when she’s not allowed to speak, think, or have a past? A hell of a lot it seems. This book I read in January…took me long enough to write a reviee. Jeez…you’re slackin’, Diandra.
This book has been on my TBR for a long time. I was so fascinated by the thought of these women being some sort of concubine for the so called “Commanders”, higher ups in this weird futuristic religious dystopian society. What story could one tell? Plus, it’s considered a classic, so that helps me with that challenge. And the conclusion after reading this?
I gotta read this again.
Oh, don’t get it twisted. It’s not because I loved the book, because I didn’t. I enjoyed it, but there was so much going on within the Offred’s head! She’s really hard to follow. I never got used to Margaret Atwoods writing style as well. It was a easy, but difficult read. Easy to get through and finish, difficult to keep engaged.
We follow Offred as she enters a new household. She is what this society calls a Handmaid. Adn what is a Handmaid, you ask? That’s where this gets fun. Handmaid’s are women who happen to still have working ovaries while a majority of men and women are sterile. So, they are sent to different households to get pregnant by the man of the house, have the baby, and let the wife bask in all the motherly gloriousness then the Handmaiden is sent to a new home to do it all over again. Offred is trying really hard to adapt to this new life, but thoughts of her past, her life where she had a husband and a daughter, keep coming in to haunt her.
Because Offred doesn’t have anyone to really speak to, you are in this character’s head a lot. The one thing I did like about that is the stream of thoughts. You know how each thought seems to have a keyword that lealds you into another thought? ” Oh the sky is blue. Blue like the water I was swimming in when I vacationed in Key West. God, i totally remember Sam getting plastered with the drag queens there. So much fun. I should go online now and see if that vaycay home is still available for the summer.” I really enjoyed it in this book, but sometimes it was super hard to follow.
Offred as a character was not my favorite. She was trying to be strong and follow the rules and was doing fine. But I think the lack of giving and receiving love really damaged her. She lost her husband (we think) and her daughter was taken away from her. She kind of went numb until she started getting attention in places she shouldn’t be going and people she shouldn’t be seeing. After that, Offred was all “F*** the rules, i’m doing me!” I would usually be happy when a character reaches this part of her journey, but i had my hand on my forehead, saying “No, Offred. No…”
I wish I could have got more into it. Maybe it was a bad time to read it. Maybe this book isnt my thing. I don’t know! All I do know is there are a hell of a lot of notes and books about “The Handmaid’s Tale” that will help me understand its real meaning. I seriously think that went over my head.
So i’m giving this book:
I will reread this book then give another review on my second go round. I really want to love this book. It deserves that much.