A picture of a Kindle with the book cover of 'The Handmaid's Tale' on display.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (Photo by me)

Rating: ๐ŸŒ•๐ŸŒ•๐ŸŒ•๐ŸŒ•๐ŸŒ‘

The Republic of Gilead (formerly known as the USA) is a hardcore Christian Saudi Arabia with the batshit cranked all the way up. It might also be Mike Pence’s American Dream. May the lord open. Or not.

I love this book. The story is told from the point of view of Offred, a Handmaid. Due to war and radiation and the lack of babies and so on, young fertile women in Gilead are treated as nothing more than baby-making machines, known as Handmaids. Gilead is a fairly new republic, and Offred remembers a time when life was free and pants were legal, which makes this story a little more painful.

It isn’t just painful, though. It’s dull, dark, and depressing. Offred often seems lifeless, or dead, which might be a turn off for some readers; but what else would you expect from someone living in a fucked up society like that?

Blessed be the tidbits:

“Bodily functions at least remain democratic. Everybody shits."

“My nakedness is strange to me already. My body seems outdated. Did I really wear bathing suits, at the beach? I did, without thought, among men, without caring that my legs, my arms, my thighs and back were on display, could be seen. Shameful, immodest. I avoid looking down at my body, not so much because itโ€™s shameful or immodest but because I donโ€™t want to see it. I donโ€™t want to look at something that determines me so completely."

“It isnโ€™t running away theyโ€™re afraid of. We wouldnโ€™t get far. Itโ€™s those other escapes."

“We seemed to be able to choose, then. We were a society dying, said Aunt Lydia, of too much choice."

-“Give me children, or else I die. Thereโ€™s more than one meaning to it."_

“We are two-legged wombs, thatโ€™s all: sacred vessels, ambulatory chalices."

“It was after the catastrophe, when they shot the President and machine-gunned the Congress and the army declared a state of emergency. They blamed it on the Islamic fanatics, at the time."

“A rat in a maze is free to go anywhere, as long as it stays inside the maze."