I wanted to listen to it over again right when it ended. Margaret Atwood so perfectly and believably writes the narrator's inner thoughts. So realistic and fresh.
It's easy to like Moira- the energetic, resourceful lesbian. But this book isn't about liking characters-and Claire Danes brings something distinct to each character it's hard not to be drawn in even if you hate them.
She just SELLS it. Even though you can't see her, she fully embodies each character when she reads their lines. Sometimes I had to backtrack and listen again because she can so completely sound like another actor entirely. Old bastards, traumatized young women, snooty backstabbing old biddies, the myriad of emotions Offred goes through from the old, carefree way of life to her "reduced circumstances."
Offred so I could hear more, I guess.
It's going to be tough to find an audiobook that lives up to this one. The "a-list" series looks a little thin, and I wonder if they let the actors and actresses pick their own titles.
It would not surprise me if Claire Danes had picked this one. There are a lot of similarities between the themes here and on Homeland (double spies, trying to overthrow totalitarian leaders, women in peril, public executions, how the human mind adapts to extreme circumstances).
Even though Atwood wrote this in the mid-80's it's still unfortunately, very relevant and illuminates aspects of our government that, I'm afraid, have gotten closer to this book then when it was written.
I am so grateful for audio books. I can quench my love for reading and still drive, run a half marathon, or do my household chores!
I loved the narration by Clare Danes. The story is riveting and thought provoking. A classic, must read for all.
A lover of audiobooks of all kinds, since childhood, when long car journeys were accompanied by Discworld stories. @ReineDesLivres (Twitter)
The Handmaid's Tale is an alarming story of a society where women have been entirely subjugated, rendered powerless and even nameless, taking their identities from the men who control them. Margaret Atwood's tale is brought vividly to life by Claire Danes, who reads with longing for the former times, fear of what her character finds herself in, and depicts perfectly the dystopian society of Gilead. This could not be better told, and could not have a better narrator.
This is not a comfortable listen, but a necessary one given the struggle for equality that women still face around the world.
I was not as impressed by Claire Danes’ narration as some here seem to be. It was good, no doubt, and impressive for a first-time narrator. I’d listen to more of her work. But I primarily noticed a precise, workmanlike quality, punctuated only by brief moments of brilliance. Her dialog was excellent and she brought her acting experience to bear, but I would have liked to hear more of that same quality throughout the exposition. I recently listened to Harlan Ellison narrate Ursula Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea, and he set a whole new benchmark for what it is to hear the narrator LIVE the story, as opposed to merely reading the text. To understand what I mean when I say Claire Danes is merely good and not great, go listen to that. (Hint: It’s not available from Audible.)
Claire Danes' narration really made the poetic style of the novel stand out and still make the text accessible. Definitely enjoyed having this book read to me...I feel like I would've abandoned it without Claire's strong voice telling me this story.
No, she isn't an author that really grabbed me with her writing. This'll probably be my only novel of hers that I read.
I kept on wanting to learn about the world of Gilead and how everyone operated within this society. I was given glimpses of this world but I wanted more!
I was fine with Offred but I thought Serena Joy was a delicious character!Honestly, many of the characters were so underdeveloped that I really had no affection or empathy for them.
Claire Danes gives a wonderful performance to an already beautiful story. This book takes you both back and forward in time on a thought-provoking journey. It's not uplifting, but makes you appreciate what you have and leaves you thinking about the author's words long after you reach the end of the book.
I have in the past enjoyed Margaret Atwood books. I like the style of her writing and her character development. The problem with the handmaid's tale is that it was a an 11 hour book with about an hour of story. With all the positive reviews I was sure the story was going to improve if I just kept listening, but it never went anywhere. I would save your credit for another book and if you are a Margaret Atwood faithful maybe choose to read this one so you can skim over the monotony!
Claire Danes really nails the narration of the story. It's a tough book to get into because the story is really, extremely disturbing. But, Danes does a wonderful, awesome, remarkable job of narrating the book. Her voice is so distinct and she completely takes on the role of the protagonist in the book. Danes becomes her and narrates her. This book really made me appreciate her as a talented actress. Both the book and the actress makes the whole thing really moving.
It's a pretty heavy topic, the book, so it would be difficult to ingest the whole book in one sitting. It's pretty traumatizing (with rape and non-rape scenes) that it would be too much to handle in one sitting.
The story is awesome, obviously.
Not Claire Danes. Her narration was inconsistant at best. The first few chapters sounded stilted and forced. Once she got into it, Danes moved into gratutous over the top emotional narration. Perhaps this is the first books she's narrated? In any case, she didn't so a very good job, and I'd like to hear it again with better professional narration.
I'm liking the Audible series performed by actors. Claire Danes does a great job of bringing Atwood's world to life, and Atwood, as always (in my experience) has these brilliant observations along the way that cannot be conveyed through any plot summary, though the plot is compelling with a 1984 flavor, too. So far, I have only read Atwood's speculative fiction (Handmaid, Maddaddam series), nonfiction (Payback), and myth retelling (The Penelopiad)...I'm looking forward to her other novels.