The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

‘The Testaments’: Margaret Atwood’s return to ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ universe

Nearly three and a half decades after “The Handmaid’s Tale” was published, Margaret Atwood has returned to the dystopian world she created. In “The Testaments,” the author expands on the themes of her seminal work with a sequel that is more than worthy of its predecessor.

Set 15 years after the events of “The Handmaid’s Tale,” “The Testaments” follows the further adventures of June Osborne, now known as “Ofjoseph.” But Atwood also tells the story from the perspectives of two other characters: Agnes, a teenager living in Gilead, and Daisy, a young woman raised outside the oppressive regime.

All three women are incredibly well-drawn and fully three-dimensional. They each have agency and voice, which is so important in a world where women are repressed and denied both. The men in “The Testaments,” meanwhile, are largely flat and one-dimensional, which only serves to underscore the fundamental inequality at the heart of Gilead.

The Testaments, the long-awaited sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, may not be what readers expect. While it is a gripping page turner, The Testaments tackles different themes and its story takes place in a slightly altered version of the world from The Handmaid’s Tale. The book follows three female narrators – Aunt Lydia, a member of Gilead’s oppressive regime; Agnes, raised within Gilead but with secrets of her own; and Daisy, a teen living in Canada who becomes embroiled in the Resistance. The Testaments offers new perspectives on Gilead and cleverly subverts expectations throughout its pages. Check your preconceived notions at the door and delve into The Testaments for an unexpected and exciting journey.

Atwood is a master storyteller, and she weaves together the three narratives in a way that is both compelling and satisfying. The result is a novel that is every bit as good as “The Handmaid’s Tale” – and in some ways even better. The Testaments by Margaret Atwood does not deliver on its promise to answer the many unresolved questions left at the end of its predecessor. While readers are granted more insight into the inner workings of Gilead, many plot threads from The Handmaid’s Tale remain untouched. The publisher’s marketing may have implied otherwise, but it is important for readers to go into The Testaments with the expectation that not all questions will be answered. Despite this flaw, The Testaments remains a worthy successor to The Handmaid’s Tale, offering a compelling and thought-provoking continuation of Offred’s story. Fans of Atwood and dystopian literature will not want to miss it.

With “The Testaments,” Margaret Atwood has given readers a sequel that is every bit as dystopian as her original masterpiece. This is a must-read for fans of “The Handmaid’s Tale” – and for anyone who loves a well-told story.

About Margaret Atwood, author of The Testaments

Margaret Atwood, author of the Handmaid’s Tale book series, was born on November 18, 1939, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. She is a Canadian poet, novelist, literary critic, essayist, teacher, environmental activist, and inventor. Since 1961, she has published 18 books of poetry, 18 novels, 11 books of non-fiction, nine collections of short fiction, eight children’s books, and two graphic novels. Atwood has won numerous awards and honors for her writing, including two Booker Prizes, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the Governor General’s Award, the Franz Kafka Prize, Princess of Asturias Awards, and the National Book Critics and PEN Center USA Lifetime Achievement Awards.

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