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The Handmaid’s Tale (Audio) Book & TV Series Review

“Nolite Te Bastardes Carborundorum”

 

the handmaid's tale Margaret Atwood

 

In what could be one of the most shocking and unforgettable books I’ve ever read, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood is classic but at the same time, it’s also timely. It has one of the most terrifying and one of the saddest stories I’ve ever read and it makes you imagine what would happen if the plot in the book would come true? This book is a story of women’s struggles in a theocratic military dictatorship called The Republic of Gilead. Written in the first person, we see the mindset of a woman narrating and calling herself Offred, but that is not her real name. She’s just named after her Commander Fred, where she lives with him and his wife Serena Joy. She’s some kind of their temporary property, thus calling her “Of Fred”. Offred has a role to fulfill, she’s what their society would call, a Handmaid. Handmaids are women of childbearing age, fertile and had committed gender and social crimes according to Gilead’s law. They’re dressed in almost all red with white winged hats and they’re assigned to a commander and his wife’s household to bear them a child. That’s because the population of the Republic of Gilead is dwindling and they badly need new births.

 

Offred is constantly having flashbacks of her world “before” and her world “now”. You see, she once lived a normal life, something close to what we have now, and she once had a family and friends. Life is definitely difficult for her new life, not just her, but with all the women around her. Women had been classified into different classes, from being Wives, Aunts, Marthas, Handmaids, Econowives, etc. It doesn’t help that they all don’t seem to get along and that their government is seriously watching their back. It’s a bleak bleak world, one that you’d never want to happen to yourself or even to your enemy. Offred’s ordeal of giving her commander and his wife a child is something that would shock you, makes you contemplate and it makes you sad. The world of Offred is never easy, but hers is a story of survival and hope even the faintest way possible.

 

the handmaid's tale book review

 

A lot of people sort of equate this book with feminism, though I think there’s very subtle hints of feminism in there, and the main character Offred didn’t seem to be the type to show it much. What she is in the book is a survivalist and she’s shown endurance despite the world she’s in. Her prevailing attitude is what probably made her a feminist of some sort. She’s indeed an interesting character, she shows obedience and submissiveness on the outside while she’s feisty inside. She remained observant of her new environment without being compromised, and while she didn’t show much defiance in the book, she definitely did in the TV series. Yes, this is the book that finally made me sign up to Hulu and let me tell you, I didn’t regret it. I wasn’t really into Hulu before because I already have Netflix, but hey Hulu’s great, and The Handmaid’s Tale by Hulu is even greater. The series is almost true to the book with a few add-ons and Elisabeth Moss fits the bill as Offred. There’s more themes of feminism in the series, and it’s more shocking and scary, it’s like watching the book come to real life. The cinematography is great and the acting is perfect. Serena Joy played by Yvonne Strahovski seems a quite a bit young for the role, but she did a phenomenal job. Overall, I love the series a lot even though at times it’s kinda hard to watch. The story is never for the faint of heart, I tell you.

 

The audiobook is also great to listen to, it’s narrated by Homeland’s Claire Danes and she sounds very convincing in her narrations, bringing to life Offred’s struggle and personality. Another best part of the book is towards the end where you start to understand the real story behind Gilead and what might have happened to Offred. Hmmm, a cliffhanger eh? The Handmaid’s Tale is a speculative dystopian novel that was once controversial but has been awarded multiple times. The book makes you think, wonder and question yourself “What would happen if one day you lose your basic right as a woman or a human being?” What would you do? Would you conform? Or would you Not let the bastards grind you down?

 

The Handmaid’s Tale Book by Margaret Atwood is available in Amazon.com

 

The Audiobook is available in Audible.com

 

While the TV series is available in Hulu.com

 

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Alex Marwood’s “The Killer Next Door” Book Review

Everyone who lives at 23 Beulah Grove has a secret”.

 

Alex Marwood’s “Killer Next Door” Book Review

 

Hi Bookworms! here’s a bone-chilling novel that I recently finished, it’s called “The Killer Next Door” by Alex Marwood. Yes, the title is as intriguing and gruesome as the story. It circles around the lives of the six residents, namely;

 

Cher: A teenage runaway with attitude issues.

Vesta: An elderly woman who seems to have lived in the boarding house for forever and has monetary issues.

Collette: The main character who’s running away from someone or something, and whose real name is Lisa.

Hossein: A middle eastern refugee who just wants to forget.

Gerard: A recluse and a former music teacher.

Thomas. Another oddball who also likes to keep to himself and is currently occupying the attic.

 

Together with their creepy landlord Roy Preece, this is a story of a harrowing life in the city of London, where the residents live in a Victorian-style but dilapidated boarding house. All of them have secrets to hide, and all of them seem to be running away from their sordid past. Preferring to forget and remain incognito. Most of the time, they like to keep to themselves and are always wary.

 

The residents seem to enjoy the anonymity that the building has offered, yet things aren’t always what they seem. There will be a terrible accident that will unite them together, and one of them is hiding a very deep dark secret. Much darker than what each of them already have. This is a tale of life, secrets, friendships, love, reality, wickedness, obsession and murder. This aint’ a tale for the faint of heart, not even for someone with a weak stomach. The details of the story are lurid, grotesque and almost scary.

 

 

killer next door Alex Marwood book review synopsis

 

Even though the story was intriguing and had a pretty satisfying ending with a good twist, this was a slow read for me. I like the whole concept of the story but it transitions from one event to another very slowly. The audiobook was the same, even though I kinda like the reader because she has different voices for each character. Yet still, the book was told in the third person being from the point of view of each character, and I still find that to be kinda hard to connect. Just not a fan of the third person narration, and it was also hard to follow as to who was who in the story. The first half was quite monotonous and the story starts to take hold almost at the end of the book. There’s few twists, but they weren’t so mind-bending. Some arguments were already expected and the overall pace of the book could need a little more push.

 

Overall, the book is riveting enough and the author truly captures the thoughts and struggles of each character while depicting the plot as realistic as can be. A good series adaptation would be great. I heard James Franco might be starring on it. I really hope so.

 

Have you read this book?

 

To purchase this book on paperback, click HERE.

To read via kindle, click HERE.

To listen to this novel via audible, click HERE.

 

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Big Little Lies Book Review

liane moriarty big little lies book

 

Things are seemingly perfect in Pirriwee. Everyone’s so nice and welcoming. What could go wrong? Until one Trivia Night….

Hey Everyone! I just finished reading this Big Little Lies book by Liane Moriarty and I know that HBO is about to release the series adaptation of this book at this month! Yes this February, like February 19! Yeah, OMG! Well, let me tell you that this book is quite an amazing fun read. The title is catchy and it’s pretty thick, but no worries, as each chapters are very short. So it’s gonna be quick and painless. 

What I like about this book is how the characters are well-written. They’re well-characterized and their personalities and conflicts are well-described. They grow on you and they’re such interesting personas living in a so-called idyllic Pirriwee Peninsula.

The story revolves around (mostly of) three women; Madeline, Celeste and Jane. Jane is new in town, ( like in the HBO trailer, portrayed by Shailene Woodley) and her kid Ziggy (as in Ziggy Stardust) will be joining the Pirriwee Public. Madeline is a savvy, vigilant, multitasking, fierce and fashionable mom, while Celeste is ethereal, gorgeous, perfect and super rich. 

 

big little lies book review

 

Their kids will eventually attend Pirriwee Public and they will all meet some familiar faces from their past. There will be groups of snobby and nosy parents together with the seemingly clueless teachers. There will be kid fights, bullying, jealousy, attraction, gossip, scandal, hate, pain, suffering, and secrets. Like the book’s title, Big Little Lies. One small lie could snowball into something big. 

All the characters’ lives will intertwine on their long awaited Trivia Night of the Pirriwee Public. Soon, their lives will change forever.

This book will grow on you. It is entertaining, shocking, relatable and riveting. It’ll make you think twice about the people around you. Hmmm… 

Don’t forget to watch the first episode of HBO’s adaptation of this book, Big Little Lies on February 19th, Sunday 9pm Eastern Time. Hopefully the show’s gonna be awesome. BUT! before you watch the show, take time to read the book first. You can buy the book HERE, or listen to the audiobook HERE.

 

 

Ciao Ciao Marco, Hello Amedeo, LOL 😂 

 

Follow me in Instagram: @reviewsandotherstuff