Hello and welcome to our February Book Avengers post! Today we are featuring The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. As you know we are at a crossroads in America with the amount protests, election questions, etc. Now I personally cannot discuss candidates or say anything that is for or against someone due to my IRL work but I can discuss books! What better way to keep our nation’s current turmoil fresh in both my mind and others by reading books that show the strength of persons when they are limited in their rights? Keep reading to find out what we thought of The Handmaid’s Tale and what we selected to pick from for March!
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…
Did it live up to the hype?
Kristina’s Rating: 3/5
First things first…I have a confession to make. I stopped reading this book at about 25%. It’s not that I didn’t like the book and I hate to start off on such a negative note, but I just thought I should say that before I say anything else.
Let’s start with the good stuff! I was absolutely intrigued by the story and the dystopian world that Atwood created, and I immediately wanted to know how and why the world had become the way it was. I also really enjoyed the way things slowly unfolded bit by bit, filling in pieces to the story along the way. Revealing things to me little by little is a sure fire way to get me totally hooked.
So, if was so invested and intrigued by this book, why didn’t I finish it? As much as I wanted to, I just couldn’t. The subject matter was super intense for me and there were a lot of passages that triggered some really painful memories. I don’t want to go into a ton of detail, but the topic of pregnancy, loss and infertility is an extremely sensitive topic for me. I found myself really struggling as I was reading and decided for my own mental health that I would set the book aside.
Did it live up to the hype?
From what I did read of “The Handmaid’s Tale”, I could totally see why it’s a classic and why so many people rave about it. Sadly, some aspects of it just hit a little close to home for me to be able to really lose myself in the story. There may come a time where I could pick it back up but, for now, I’m gonna practice some self-care and put this in the DNF pile.
Want to be a part of picking our next book? Below are our three March picks that we’ve narrowed down from our current TBR list. For your vote to count head on over to our twitter hashtag #bookavengers and vote using our twitter poll. (It will be pinned this month to my twitter: @gone_pecan) Feel free to retweet and help promote your pick! Voting closes February 27th and we will be announcing our next pick via twitter that day.
Summer at Castle Auburn by Sharon Shinn
As a child, Coriel Halsing spent many glorious summers at Castle Auburn with her half-sister-and fell in love with a handsome prince who could never be hers. But now that she is a young woman, she begins to see the dark side of this magical place…
1984 by George Orwell
The year 1984 has come and gone, but George Orwell’s prophetic, nightmarish vision in 1949 of the world we were becoming is timelier than ever. 1984 is still the great modern classic of “negative utopia” -a startlingly original and haunting novel that creates an imaginary world that is completely convincing, from the first sentence to the last four words. No one can deny the novel’s hold on the imaginations of whole generations, or the power of its admonitions -a power that seems to grow, not lessen, with the passage of time.
In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters
n 1918, the world seems on the verge of apocalypse. Americans roam the streets in gauze masks to ward off the deadly Spanish influenza, and the government ships young men to the front lines of a brutal war, creating an atmosphere of fear and confusion. Sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black watches as desperate mourners flock to séances and spirit photographers for comfort, but she herself has never believed in ghosts. During her bleakest moment, however, she’s forced to rethink her entire way of looking at life and death, for her first love—a boy who died in battle—returns in spirit form. But what does he want from her?
We hope you guys enjoyed our post and vote to pick our next back list books! Please remember voting will end February 27th (via our twitter poll) and we will announce our March pick then. As always, if it is new to you as well please join us in reading, we’d love to chat with others while we are reading. See you soon!