The Handmaid’s Tale Book Summary | Margaret Atwood | Ratings & Review | 2023

Discover the dystopian world of “The Handmaid’s Tale” Summary, where women’s rights are stripped away, and they are reduced to reproductive vessels. Read on to explore the terrifying universe created by Margaret Atwood


“The Handmaid’s Tale” Summary is a groundbreaking novel by Canadian author Margaret Atwood. Published in 1985, the book has won numerous awards and has been adapted into a critically acclaimed TV series. The story is set in the fictional Republic of Gilead, a totalitarian society where women are treated as property and forced to bear children for the ruling class

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The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid’s Tale

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The Handmaid’s Tale Quotes

The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale Characters

Here are some of the main characters from “The Handmaid’s Tale”:

OffredThe protagonist of the story, a Handmaid assigned to Commander Waterford and his wife Serena Joy. Her real name is June Osborne
Commander Fred Waterford A high-ranking official in the Gileadean regime who is assigned as Offred’s “Commander
Serena Joy WaterfordThe wife of Commander Waterford and a former gospel singer and conservative activist
LukeJune’s husband from before Gilead, who is presumed dead after their failed attempt to escape across the Canadian border
Aunt LydiaThe strict and intimidating woman who trains and oversees the Handmaids in their new roles
The Handmaid’s Tale Characters

The Handmaid’s Tale Summary

The story is set in a near-future totalitarian society , which has replaced the United States. The novel is narrated by a woman named Offred, who is a Handmaid in the household of the Commander and his wife, Serena Joy

In this new society, the birth rate has drastically declined, and fertile women like Offred are forced to become Handmaids, whose sole purpose is to bear children for their assigned Commanders. Offred’s life is tightly controlled by the government, and she is not allowed to read, write, or have any personal relationships.

Offred remembers her life before Gilead, when she was married with a daughter and had a job. She frequently flashes back to these memories, which highlight the contrast between her old life of freedom and her new life of subjugation. She also reveals that she is not the only Handmaid in the household and that there is a network of resistance operating outside of Gilead.

Offred is desperate to escape her oppressive existence and is hopeful when she starts a clandestine relationship with the Commander. However, their relationship ultimately leads to her discovery that the Commander and his wife are infertile and have been breaking the law by using Offred to conceive a child.

The novel ends ambiguously, with Offred being taken away by unknown authorities, leaving the reader to wonder about her fate. “The Handmaid’s Tale” has been adapted into various forms, including a 1990 film, an opera, and a popular television series that premiered in 2017. The novel is widely regarded as a classic of dystopian literature and a commentary on gender, power, and control.

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Key Takeaways of The Handmaid’s Tale

Here are some key takeaways from the novel:

Oppression and Control The Republic of Gilead is a society where women have no rights and are tightly controlled by the government. The government controls every aspect of their lives, from their clothing to their reproductive systems
Religious FundamentalismThe Republic of Gilead is founded on a distorted interpretation of Christianity. The government uses religion as a tool to control the population and justify their oppressive policies
Gender RolesThe society in the novel is strictly divided into gender roles. Men are in positions of power, while women are relegated to subservient roles
The Power of LanguageThe government uses language to reinforce their authority and to limit the thoughts and actions of the population
Resistance and HopeOffred and other characters in the novel seek to resist the government’s control and to find hope in their bleak circumstances
Key Takeaways of The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale Author

Margaret Atwood is a Canadian author, poet, and literary critic. She was born on November 18, 1939, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Atwood is a prolific writer and has published over 50 books of fiction, poetry, and critical essays. She is best known for her novels, including “The Handmaid’s Tale,” which has become a cultural phenomenon and has been adapted into a television series


The Handmaid’s Tale Genre

“The Handmaid’s Tale” is a dystopian novel. Dystopian fiction is a sub-genre of speculative fiction that imagines a society that is undesirable or frightening. In a dystopian world, there is usually some form of oppressive government, societal collapse, or other catastrophic event that has caused a breakdown in normal social order. Dystopian novels often explore themes of oppression, control, resistance, and the consequences of unchecked power. “The Handmaid’s Tale” is a prime example of dystopian literature

Books Like The Handmaid’s Tale

If you enjoyed reading “The Handmaid’s Tale,” you might also enjoy these books:

  1. “1984” by George Orwell
  2. “Brave New World” by Aldous Huxley
  3. “The Testaments” by Margaret Atwood
  4. “The Children of Men” by P.D. James

The Handmaid’s Tale Book Review

The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid’s Tale

“The Handmaid’s Tale” is a powerful and important novel that explores issues of gender, power, and oppression. Atwood’s writing is exceptional, and the world she creates is both disturbing and compelling. This is a must-read for anyone interested in dystopian fiction, feminist literature, or social commentary

The Handmaid’s Tale Price In India

“The Handmaid’s Tale” is available on Amazon India . The Price of the Novel is 362/- The price may vary depending on the format (e.g. paperback, hardcover, Kindle edition).

The Handmaid’s Tale Price In U.S

“The Handmaid’s Tale” is also available on Amazon U.S . The Price of the Novel is $9.53 The price may vary depending on the format (e.g. paperback, hardcover, Kindle edition).

The Handmaid’s Tale Audiobook

Audiobook of “The Handmaid’s Tale” is available on . The price of this version is 1005/- You can also find it on various audiobook platforms such as Google Play Books, and iTunes

Link of Audiobook : The Handmaid’s Tale


“The Handmaid’s Tale” novel summary is a seminal work of dystopian literature that continues to resonate with readers today. Through its exploration of themes such as oppression, resistance, and individual agency, the novel challenges us to consider the importance of freedom and the dangers of totalitarianism. With its complex and nuanced characters and gripping plot, “The Handmaid’s Tale” novel summary is a must-read for anyone interested in thought-provoking and socially relevant literature.


Is “The Handmaid’s Tale” novel summary suitable for all readers?

While “The Handmaid’s Tale” novel summary is a work of fiction, it deals with mature themes and includes depictions of violence and sexual assault. As such, it may not be suitable for all readers

Is there a sequel to “The Handmaid’s Tale” novel summary?

Yes, Margaret Atwood wrote a sequel to the novel in 2019 titled “The Testaments.”

What is the significance of the red cloaks worn by the handmaids in “The Handmaid’s Tale” novel summary?

The red cloaks are a symbol of the handmaids’ subjugation and their role as reproductive vessels for the ruling class. They are also a powerful visual reminder of the ways in which women are reduced to their reproductive functions in the society of the novel