Monday, 28 September 2015

Book Group - The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood


We picked this book because one of the group realised not all of us had read The Handmaid's Tale and also *really* wanted to re-read for herself. Everyone but one was reading the book for the first time and to be honest, we couldn't believe that none of us had read it before! a book that has been around of for 30 years meant that we utilised the Oxfam Book Shop connection to get lots of lovely second hand copies - a variety of covers across the ages was lovely to see and I regret not taking a photo at the time.

The Handmaid's Tale was published back in 1985 and is a well established classic, there's a great amount of material to chose from in creating the guide for a book group discussion - in fact selecting what not to read is probably harder!

A selection of places to look is here:

As you can see, there's so much out there! There's even a film adaptation as well as a graphic novel planned for release in 2016 (I was at a Margaret Atwood event for her new book when she told us the novel was on "second pencil". 

As well the prolific reading material, on the night, we spent a lot of time talking about:
  • oppression of women in the past, present and Atwood's future
  • the fear that something like Offred's future isn't as actually that unrealistic
  • the fact that most of us, strong, independent, women had never read this book. I mean, how could that happen?!

For me, the best thing that came out of reading this book was finding Margaret Atwood, and then realising that she has written so. many. books. So many! I've had to hold myself back from binge reading them in Netflix styley!

Have you read this book as part of your book group? Let us know what you think!

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