A gripping story that plunges its roots into our most feared nightmare. Through the eyes of Offred we are suddenly thrown into a surreal world which takes us back to the patriarchal world based on the Old Testament. Here women have been delegated to the role of homemakers and breeders.
The novel is set in an undetermined period in the future.in the territory that had originally been Massachusetts, USA. In the aftermath of terrible environmental disasters which resulted from chemical accidents birth-rates have dramatically fallen with a huge increase in sterility and stillbirths. Offred who has been kidnapped has been forced to become a handmaid in the new Republic of Gilead which is governed by a theocratic regime. Handmaids are young, fertile women who have been enslaved and destined to give birth to the future generations who will be brought up by the commanders and their wives.
Atwood paints a ruthless picture of American society using fiction to highlight the hypocritical side of a country that still harbours a puritanical legacy in the folds of its culture. We will witness the desperate struggle to survive and to regain human dignity that women have been deprived of.