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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.

Cover Art by Fred Marcellino. Used with permission of Pippin Properties, Inc.

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

4.3 (16621 )
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4.3 (15251 )
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4.6 (15228 )
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Performance
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  •  
    E. L. Stelzner Boylston, MA 02-27-17
    E. L. Stelzner Boylston, MA 02-27-17 Member Since 2015
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    "Well written but.."

    I thought this book was very well-written and I thought the idea was plausible as well as very realistic in a world where even flawed ideology can take over a society rapidly. The reason I only gave it three stars was I thought the story was not very well developed, especially in the end where she just disappeared and then fast forward to the future people are trying to figure out what happened to her and where her family xcetera was. I realize that a lot of books leave things to the imagination but I just thought it could have done a better job of showing us how this woman really was a heroine and worked her way to a better place. In the other words, I wanted a happy ending and instead I got a question mark. Many of you reading this review probably think that is a silly notion for someone to want a happy ending but even if it didn't give us a happy ending it could have given us at least an ending where we understood what really happened and there was some finality to her long and treacherous journey.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Randal S. Carlson Kansas City 02-26-17
    Randal S. Carlson Kansas City 02-26-17 Member Since 2009
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    "Sociologically Thought Provoking."

    Well this made up nation of Gilead was sociologically thought provoking it was the most boring read of my life. As I read chapter after chapter I kept thinking that pretty soon something would happen and it would begin to get interesting or exciting. That just never happened! It stayed absolutely boring from beginning to end. The most worthless read of my entire life.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 02-25-17 Member Since 2016
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    "scary good"

    the narrator excellent. pacing great. scary good book for how close we are to this

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Olson 02-25-17
    J. Olson 02-25-17 Member Since 2017
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    "loved the narrator"

    narrator was amazing, I wasn't very fond of the end but I think it's because I didn't want it to end.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michelle Smiley San Antonio, TX 02-25-17
    Michelle Smiley San Antonio, TX 02-25-17 Member Since 2017

    Michelle Smiley - Wife, Mom, and Teacher

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    "Wow"

    it's what to read when you're done with Hunger Games and over 30 years old.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Flo in Gold Canyon 02-25-17
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    "Very eerie in light of world events..."
    What made the experience of listening to The Handmaid's Tale the most enjoyable?

    Really enjoy Claire Danes as the narrator. An audio book is a good way to experience Margaret Atwood...not the easiest author to love but really enjoying this experience.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Intriguing storyline and character development.


    What does Claire Danes bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Voice intonation is well controlled and enjoyable. Listener must participate in the story in order to interpret.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No because the theme is heavy and difficult emotionally.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer A. 02-24-17
    Jennifer A. 02-24-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Oh the future is nigh..."

    I was 15 years old when this book came out in the mid-80's and at that time there was a scourge of teen-pregnancies. I was not one of them thankfully. I was also living in the Bible-belt state of Virginia at that time which then and is now a Republican red state. I read this book when it came out as I was a fan of SF and Fantasy and was so distraught as I read it because of the dystopian/totalitarian/dictatorial possibilities within the pages of this phenomenal and important book. So my reality of that time was an all-time high of reported teen-pregnancies and living in a conservative state against my reading of The Handmaiden's Tale, Anthem by A. Rand, Brave New World by A. Huxley was such a mind-blowing juxtaposition that it made my outlook on my life at that time such that I became and still am a 'quiet feminist'. And now fast-forward to our current situation, our seas, skies, soil and people are super polluted due to too much chemical exposure that is so so true of the infertility of many women and men of our population. I am scared for our future generations and for our Mother Earth. And Father Sky. And I leave you now with a saying that haunts my heart 'Wicked are the ways of men who have no conscience or foresight for the future'. This book is not a novel to me it was a textbook that taught me well.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    bookobsessed4 02-19-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Meh"

    The story, though beautifully read, was a little confusing. I was bored a lot listening to this tale and I wasn't the biggest fan of the ending but it does have me wondering. I felt a little detached from the characters- you get some background but not a lot and throughout the book so it seemed like the author was hiding the plot from you for a while. Kind of felt that through most of the book but I did finish it in a few days. Not bad. I'd rather just watch the movie if there is one.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    KEP 02-16-17
    KEP 02-16-17 Member Since 2016
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    8
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    "couldn't stop listening"

    thought it was so so good! just trust me. give it a shot, dude! k?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Mary 02-16-17
    Mary 02-16-17
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    32
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    "thought it would be better"

    narrator was great. story had potential to be. it left a lot of unanswered questions .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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