The Testaments
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The Testaments

3.77 (276 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The wait is over

And so I step up, into the darkness within; or else the light.

When the van door slammed on Offred’s future at the end of The Handmaid’s Tale, readers had no way of telling what lay ahead for her – freedom, prison or death.

With The Testaments, the wait is over.

Margaret Atwood’s sequel picks up the story 15 years after Offred stepped into the unknown, with the explosive testaments of three female narrators from Gilead.

‘Dear Readers: Everything you’ve ever asked me about Gilead and its inner workings is the inspiration for this book. Well, almost everything! The other inspiration is the world we’ve been living in.’ Margaret Atwood
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Product details

  • Hardback | 400 pages
  • 156 x 240 x 39mm | 667g
  • CHATTO & WINDUS
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1784742325
  • 9781784742324
  • 1

Review Text

"I gobbled it down... Atwood has an incredible intellectual nimbleness that challenges us constantly and poses the question that lies like a pearl inside the shell of this frighteningly readable novel "Before you sit in judgement, how would you behave in Gilead?""
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Review quote

"The Testaments is Atwood at her best, in its mixture of generosity, insight and control. The prose is adroit, direct, beautifully turned. All over the reading world, the history books are being opened to the next blank page and Atwood's name is written at the top of it. To read this book is to feel the world turning" -- Anne Enright * Guardian * "I gobbled it down... Atwood has an incredible intellectual nimbleness that challenges us constantly and poses the question that lies like a pearl inside the shell of this frighteningly readable novel "Before you sit in judgement, how would you behave in Gilead?"" -- Allison Pearson * Sunday Telegraph * "A cracker: urgent, moving and as tense as any thriller... there's a darkly rebellious humour, ingenious wordplay and, of course, chillingly timely warnings. Atwood is long overdue a Nobel" -- Hepzibah Anderson * Mail on Sunday * "A plump, pacy, witty and tightly plotted page-turner that transports us straight back to the dark heart of Gilead... Atwood is on top form" -- Julie Myerson * Observer * "Finding hope in a hopeless place, this is everything The Handmaid's Tale fans wanted and more. Prepare to hold your breath throughout, and to cry real tears at the end. My book of the year" -- Kayleigh Dray * Stylist * "It is an addictively readable, fastpaced adventure... the rhyme of reality with fiction is loud and devastatingly clear... In The Testaments, Atwood changes the emphasis of the plot, to strike a note of optimism - a hopeful reminder that resistance is possible and such regimes do eventually always fall" -- Holly Williams * Independent * "While unflinching in depicting horror and showing how complicity enables the collapse of compassion, The Testaments is also a clarion call to hope, resistance and activism... The Testaments is a formidable achievement that will doubtless be read in decades to come" -- Anita Sethi * i news * "Ingenuity has always delighted Atwood. Here she revels in it... The twists and turns of an extravagantly suspenseful final race for freedom are done with bravura relish" -- Peter Kemp * Sunday Times * "The Testaments take us to a subtly altered Gilead and, in many ways, a more hopeful one... a rallying cry for activism that argues for the connectedness of societies and their peoples... Atwood's task in returning to the world of her best-known work was a big one, but the result is a success that more than justifies her Booker prize shortlisting" -- Alex Clark * Guardian * "The book may surprise readers who wondered, when the sequel was announced, whether Atwood was making a mistake in returning to her earlier work. She has said that The Testaments was inspired by readers' questions about the inner workings of Gilead, and also by "the world we've been living in." But it seems to have another aim as well: to help us see more clearly the kinds of complicity required for constructing a world like the one she had already imagined, and the world we fear our own might become" -- Jia Tolentino * New Yorker * "The very act of writing or recording one's experiences, Atwood argues, is "an act of hope."... in testifying to what they have witnessed, Offred, Nicole, Agnes and, yes, Lydia are leaving behind accounts that will challenge official Gileadean narratives, and in doing so, they are standing up to the regime's determination to silence women by telling their own stories in their own voices" -- Michiko Katutani * New York Times * "An era-defining masterpiece" * Waterstones.com * "A work of brilliant and searing defiance" * MJ Hyland * "Fluent, imaginative and provocative" -- Stuart Kelly * Scotland on Sunday * "It is a measure of Atwood's virtuosity as a writer... that rather than picking up where she left off in 1985 when The Handmaid's Tale was published, she has written such a perfect companion piece" * Mail on Sunday Ireland *
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About Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood is the author of more than fifty books of fiction, poetry and critical essays. Her novels include Cat's Eye, The Robber Bride, Alias Grace, The Blind Assassin and the MaddAddam trilogy. Her 1985 classic, The Handmaid's Tale, went back into the bestseller charts with the election of Donald Trump, when the Handmaids became a symbol of resistance against the disempowerment of women, and with the 2017 release of the award-winning Channel 4 TV series.

Atwood has won numerous awards including the Booker Prize, the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Imagination in Service to Society, the Franz Kafka Prize, the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade and the PEN USA Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2019 she was made a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour for services to literature. She has also worked as a cartoonist, illustrator, librettist, playwright and puppeteer. She lives in Toronto, Canada.
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Rating details

276 ratings
3.77 out of 5 stars
5 46% (128)
4 18% (50)
3 14% (38)
2 10% (28)
1 12% (32)
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