Audiobook Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Posted January 30, 2017 by Felicia S in 2017 Read, 3.50 Wine Glasses, Audiobook, Reviews / 13 Comments

Audiobook Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret AtwoodSource: Audiobook Purchase

Format: Audiobook

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Narrator: Claire Danes
Length: 11 hrs

Date Read: January 2017

Genre: General Fiction

Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the years before, when she lived and made love with her husband, Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now...

More Information:
Publisher: Anchor Books

Read/Listened for Fun (Audible/Library)
Overall Rating: 3.50
Story Rating: 3.50
Character Rating: 3.50

Audio Rating: 3.50 (not part of the overall rating)

Quick Thoughts: It is really hard for me to put into words how I feel about this book. I thought it was fascinating and there were parts of the story that I was really absorbed by. However, the ending didn’t really work for me and there were other parts that just didn’t work for me either. Overall I am looking forward to the TV Series and I am glad that I read the book first.

Audio Thoughts:

Narrated by: Claire Danes /Length: 11 hrs

So I love Claire Danes as an actress but her performance was just OK. I felt there needed to more there even though it was a very strict setting. Overall it wasn’t a bad performance just wasn’t my favorite.

NOTE:My other reason for putting this is in the 3 range and not 4 is because of the timing. Seems like timeline wise there was about 10 years (maybe) between her being in “normal” times (going to college, married, etc) vs “new” times (being a handmaid). Even if I was to harken back to the 80s when our technology was not as advanced as today (I was a teenager then) this was a hard timeline to buy for me. It was too big of a flip too fast.


Part of my Read It, Rate It, File It, DONE! Reviews


FTC Disclosure


Overall Rating
3.5 / 5
Story Rating
3.5 / 5
Character Rating
3.5 / 5
Narrator Rating
3.5 / 5
Felicia S
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13 responses to “Audiobook Review: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

  1. I had to read your review because I read this eons ago and remember liking it. I’ve liked several of Atwood’s books – Alias Grace is a fav. I’m sorry the audio, and the story, were both ‘meh’. Anyway, I just saw the promo for the show and it looks really good. You’ll have to let me know if it’s worth watching. πŸ™‚

  2. I still haven’t read this book but will one of these days. I just listened to a great podcast mini-series that was a dramatic re-visit of this work with a full cast of actors. It was chilling. The podcast is called Secrets, Crimes & Audiotape, if anyone is interested.

    • I didn’t even know there was a movie –I’m gonna have to look it up. The mini-series has a great cast and I am looking forward to it. I hope I buy the timeline a little bit more πŸ™‚

    • I am really looking forward to the mini-series but yeah the book was a little flat for me. I am hoping the timeline makes more sense to me in the mini-series πŸ™‚

  3. This is a book that makes me feel guilty. I read it back in the day and was a bit meh about it. The dystopian future it portrayed didn’t resonate with me as feeling all that realistic, though I don’t remember why. And I wasn’t caught up emotionally. If I’m caught up emotionally, you own me.

    And yet I feel like this is one of those books that I am required to revere and respect. Maybe I should hang this out there on goodreads so people can tut their disapproval. In fact, I shall.

    • I felt that way after finishing since sooooooooooooooooooooooo many people just loved it. I just didn’t buy the timeline and the end I was like “WTF” that is it. I think I like it even less a few weeks later than when I wrote the review LOL πŸ™‚

      I am looking forward to the mini-series though. I think this is going to be a PS I Love You kind of thing where I like the movie way better than the book.