The Testaments

Margaret Atwood
The Testaments Cover

The Testaments


No, just no. I'm sorry but Margaret Atwood is just cashing in on the resurgent popularity of "The Handmaids Tale" now that Netflix has the series out, and I am not impressed. The author tried to make this a redemption story and in the process, diminished the power of the original story.

The reason The Handmaids Tale was so chilling was the ambiguity of the ending, but also of the entire story. Offred was not an action hero, her's was not a call to arms. Her story was a small light shone upon a totalitarian regime. A candle in the dark one could say, but not even a full size candle, a single birthday candle. All Offred was trying to do was survive and make some sort of life in a world where all her choices were taken from her. The scene where she receives the hand cream from the Commander is still etched upon my mind, because even as a very young teen (I was 15 when I read it for the first time) I recognized how truly diminished Offred was, and how terrifying the idea that my own life could be diminished if I allowed it through simple inaction. Politically aware Badseedgirl was born after reading this book; and for that I will be forever in Margaret Atwood's debt.

But The Testament removed all that and left only a gutted shell, which it then tried to fill it with literary mush.