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The Handmaid's Tale Audiobook

The Handmaid's Tale

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Margaret Atwood’s modern classic is one of the most stunning and powerful works of speculative fiction ever written, and it took a lot of careful consideration to determine who would best narrate this important book. Claire Danes elevates the frightening dystopic vision by lending a sheen of reality with her performance. She doesn't act, and she doesn't need to. She recounts. She breathes out the tale as if she is living it. Resigned, beaten down, traveling through hell by putting one step ahead of the other. I was utterly convinced by her performance. —Emily

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award, Fiction, 2013

Margaret Atwood's popular dystopian novel The Handmaid's Tale explores a broad range of issues relating to power, gender and religious politics. Multiple Golden Globe award-winner Claire Danes (Romeo and Juliet, The Hours) gives a stirring performance of this classic in speculative fiction, one of the most powerful and widely read novels of our time.

After a staged terrorist attack kills the President and most of Congress, the government is deposed and taken over by the oppressive and all controlling Republic of Gilead. Offred, now a Handmaid serving in the household of the enigmatic Commander and his bitter wife, can remember a time when she lived with her husband and daughter and had a job, before she lost even her own name. Despite the danger, Offred learns to navigate the intimate secrets of those who control her every move, risking her life in breaking the rules in hopes of ending this oppression.

The Handmaid's Tale is part of Audible’s A-List Collection, featuring the world’s most celebrated actors narrating distinguished works of literature that each star had a hand in selecting. For more great books performed by Hollywood’s finest, click here.

©1985 Margaret Atwood (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

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What the Critics Say

“Claire Danes sparkles in this performance…Danes’s Offred is complex, and her flashes of intense strength highlight her vulnerability. This is a consuming listen, thanks to Danes’s emotional subtleties.” (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Jenifer waters 10-04-16 Member Since 2015
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    26
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    "Not what I expected."

    I can appreciate the creativity of the story, however, it is slow moving and the end is quite abrupt and frustrating.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie 10-03-16
    Julie 10-03-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Glad I don't live in that world"
    What about Claire Danes’s performance did you like?

    Ms. Danes brings depth to the female characters. She doesn't assume they're all meek people-pleasers.


    Any additional comments?

    This book creates a possible future, in which the enslavement of women is quite visible. I'd like to see more books in this same world, from different points of view.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Avid Reader 44 10-02-16
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    "Compelling Story"
    What made the experience of listening to The Handmaid's Tale the most enjoyable?

    The narrator did a great job of bringing the story to life. I felt like I was listening to the character actually talking.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It's a dark look at authoritarianism and the importance of freedom.


    Any additional comments?

    Parts of this book are pretty disturbing. I was listening to it on the way to work and had to quit because the scene was so upsetting. When I was back at home, however, I listened to it non-stop for a whole evening because I desperately wanted to find out what happened and how it ends. I'm not sure I'll ever read it again, but I can see why it is a classic and why it's been a banned book. I'm glad I read it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laurie Gore 09-29-16
    Laurie Gore 09-29-16 Member Since 2014

    I don't want to read the bestsellers. I want to read the best written.

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    "Marvelous Performance"

    This is the second time I have read this book and the first time as an audiobook. Ms. Danes brings remarkable talent to this telling of the handmaid's tale, adding appropriate tension, suspense and emotion to the first person narrative. I came away from the book feeling as if I heard it as the story was being told the first time. I think more than most audiobooks I have read, this performance added to the experience significantly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Duane Steenson 09-29-16 Member Since 2016
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    25
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    "Brilliant. Beautifully written."

    The writing was brilliant. A nearly perfect novel. The theme perhaps more vital now than when it was written. Clare Danes was a perfect choice. Her performance flawless.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura 09-27-16
    Laura 09-27-16

    Mynt

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    "Immersive: excellent story and narrator"

    Immersive. Engrossing story with a perfect narrator performance. The post apocalyptic ultra conservative regime strips women on their rights. You see yourself in the story: what would you do in those circumstances? I loved the epilogue which provided a analytical perspective and historical comparisons

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Engineer to the core 09-26-16

    Linux System Engineer

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    6
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    "A sad tale with no redeeming characteristics"

    It was a horror story about hopelessly trapped women, and no possibility of saving any of them. what's the point?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MandSWinOK 09-24-16
    MandSWinOK 09-24-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Minutia gets old"

    While the dystopian society presented is interesting, the incessant inclusion of wandering minutia reminded me of books written by authors who were paid by the word.

    Nonetheless, the book is intelligently written and presents worthwhile philosophical questions.

    I would only recommend The Handmaid's Tale to patient deep-thinkers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vicky L. Williams 09-24-16
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    "Great listen"

    This isn't the a genre of book I normally listen to, but I enjoyed it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Danielle 09-20-16
    Danielle 09-20-16 Member Since 2016
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    9
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    "It was okay"
    Any additional comments?

    It was an okay book, I had high expectations from previous reviews. It was much different than I expected and some parts were kind of slow. Claire Danes did a good job narrating though. Would recommend, but not raving reviews...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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