September 2016: Book Club Review

Theme - Dystopia: ‘The Heart Goes Last’ by Margaret Atwood


Many in the group hadn’t read any of her other work, and felt that this was a poor recommendation – especially based on what they had seen so far of the television series of The Handmaid’s Tale.

Extended from an early short story, this novel had three parts that were almost stand-alone in their tone and content: the dystopian set-up in the not-too-distant future, a too-good-to-be-believed development, and a sci-fi style denouement involving prostibots and Elvis Presley impersonators. The discussion focussed on the characters and most felt that more time should have been spent ensuring that they were more realistic and well-rounded.

Overall we gave this book a rating of  3.5/5.

Recommended further reading:


If you would like to read more Margaret Atwood and enjoyed her ‘speculative fiction’, you could try:

  • ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’

  • The ‘MaddAddam’ trilogy (‘Oryx and Crake’, ‘Before the Flood’ and ‘MaddAddam’)

If you want more Margaret Atwood, but fancy a different genre, try:

  • ‘Alias Grace’

  • 'The Blind Assassin’

If you like the idea of dystopia fiction, but want to try a different author, you could also read:

  • ‘1984’ by George Orwell

  • ‘Never Let Me Go’ by Kazuo Ishiguro

  • ‘Fahrenheit 451’ by Ray Bradbury

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