Tag Archives: Dystopian Fiction

Review: The Testaments

The Testaments

The Testaments
By Margaret Atwood
Nan A. Talese, 9780385543781, September 2019, 432pp.

The Short of It:

A solid follow-up to The Handmaid’s Tale and although it’s been years since I’ve read The Handmaid’s Tale, I did not need a refresher before reading this one.

The Rest of It:

Gilead. A place where women are assigned to a certain order based on their “talents”. Some are married off to high-profile men to live a somewhat respectable life, surrounded by other women to cater to whatever they may need, even a baby if they cannot have one naturally. Other women are tasked with finding more women like them. Others, find themselves fighting for the resistance in the form of “Mayday”.

The Testaments focuses on Baby Nicole, who was whisked away from Gilead years ago. Much effort is spent trying to find her but the people involved in her disappearance have organized to the point where her disappearance and her eventual re-introduction is all part of a much larger plan to take Gilead down.

This novel would have been captivating all by itself but reading it during the Supreme Court confirmation process, and realizing how much is currently at stake in the area of women’s reproductive rights, was chilling to say the least.

I enjoyed this read. Atwood is a great storyteller and quickly pulls you in. My only complaint is that it was a little hard to keep track of all the “Aunts”. I often had to go back a few pages to remind myself who was who. My club chose this for our discussion this month and I think it’s a book that needs to be discussed so I am hoping for some good conversation.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review: Divergent

Divergent

Divergent
By Veronica Roth
(Katherine Tegen Books, Hardcover, 9780062024022, May 2011, 496pp.)

The Short of It:

Reading this is like visiting a theme park from the comfort of your home. Lots of thrills. A fast-paced, adventurous read.

The Rest of It:

When you hit a certain age, you are expected to make a choice that could change your life forever and it’s time for Beatrice to make that choice. The world that Beatrice lives in is divided into five factions:

Abnegation – the selfless

Amity – the peaceful

Candor – the honest

Dauntless – the brave

Erudite – the intelligent

After completing her aptitude test, Beatrice is told that she falls into more than one faction. That she is in fact, Divergent. At the time, this information doesn’t mean much to her but she is told that being Divergent is a danger in and of itself and that she shouldn’t tell anyone, not even her family.

At the choosing ceremony, she is forced to make a decision. Should she stay with her family in Abnegation? Or should she choose another faction? As you can imagine, the factions and how they view each other is key here. Beatrice, after making her decision changes her name to Tris and then realizes that she is in the middle of a much larger plan.

This book is pure fun. It’s well-paced with characters you can relate to. It’s not over-the-top dramatic as some young adult books can be and it rates low on the violence scale which is odd for a dystopian novel. I sat down to read a few chapters and ended up reading it straight through.

A lot of readers compare it to The Hunger Games but I prefer this series over HG. Oh and yes, Divergent is also part of a series but I found it to be more entertaining with better writing and a lot less violence. I just picked up book #2 so I can’t wait to dive in.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.