Series: The Handmaid's Tale #2
Published by Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group on September 10, 2019
Genres: Dystopian, Fiction, General, Political, Science Fiction
Source: Personal Library
A New York Times bestselling modern masterpiece that "reminds us of the power of truth in the face of evil” (People)—and can be read on its own or as a sequel to Margaret Atwood’s classic, The Handmaid’s Tale. “Atwood’s powers are on full display” (Los Angeles Times) in this deeply compelling Booker Prize-winning novel, now updated with additional content that explores the historical sources, ideas, and material that inspired Atwood. More than fifteen years after the events of The Handmaid's Tale, the theocratic regime of the Republic of Gilead maintains its grip on power, but there are signs it is beginning to rot from within. At this crucial moment, the lives of three radically different women converge, with potentially explosive results. Two have grown up as part of the first generation to come of age in the new order. The testimonies of these two young women are joined by a third: Aunt Lydia. Her complex past and uncertain future unfold in surprising and pivotal ways. With The Testaments, Margaret Atwood opens up the innermost workings of Gilead, as each woman is forced to come to terms with who she is, and how far she will go for what she believes.
If you want to see inflammatory reviews, just go look at the reviews for The Testaments on Goodreads. Several people have panned the book majorly, stating that the book wasn’t necessary. I’m here to tell you that while those people might feel The Handmaid’s Tale was fine as it was, it really wasn’t.
What those illustrious readers and reviewers failed to understand was that The Handmaid’s Tale left off with so many unanswered questions. What happened to Offred in the end? Did she survive? Was she ever reunited with her daughter? How long did Gilead exist after Offred’s story ended? How did Gilead fall? We needed answers. This book provided them.
I was ecstatic to hear this book was coming out. I immediately set out to obtain a copy as soon as it was released, although it took me a few days to get to it. This book was amazing. It answered all the questions I had.
The book is written from the perspective of three people – Agnes Jemima, Daisy, and Aunt Lydia. Anyone who has read The Handmaid’s Tale or even watched the series on Hulu knows who Aunt Lydia is. The other two, perhaps not so much. However, if you catch the clues, you’ll figure out who Agnes Jemima is pretty quickly. Yes, there are clues. No, I won’t tell you what they are.
This book had some very interesting twists in it. While I won’t tell you the gory details, just know that Aunt Lydia has a very big role to play in this story. She gives more information about how the “Aunts” got their start in Gilead. She also does some things that might surprise you, considering her role in The Handmaid’s Tale and how faithful she was to Gilead in that story.
Agnes Jemima was pretty easy to figure out once a couple of clues were given, but Daisy took a tiny bit longer to figure out. I had Daisy’s true identity worked out long before it was stated in the book, but it didn’t matter.
There is action and adventure in this book. There is heartache and there are horrors that we see in our world today. You will laugh at some of the antics, be horrified by some parts of the book, and wonder what is wrong with these people in most parts of the book. It’s a must read if you’ve read The Handmaid’s Tale and had any questions about Gilead, Offred, or Offred’s daughter.
I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars because I honestly didn’t want to stop reading it. I had to know what was going on. I had to see what would be revealed next. I know to get to the end. When I did, I was so happy because even after all this… they still treat Offred and other characters from The Handmaid’s Tale and The Testaments as though they could be myths. It’s awesome and I highly recommend this book.