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NOW A SMASH-HIT CHANNEL 4 TV SERIES

DISCOVER the BESTSELLING DYSTOPIAN NOVEL behind the AWARD-WINNING TV SERIES
Second season now airing on Channel 4 starring Elisabeth Moss

The official TV tie-in edition of The Handmaid’s Tale, with a new introduction from Margaret Atwood

‘I believe in the resistance as I believe there can be no light without shadow; or rather, no shadow unless there is also light.’
Offred is a Handmaid in The Republic of Gilead, a religious totalitarian state in what was formerly known as the United States. She is placed in the household of The Commander, Fred Waterford – her assigned name, Offred, means ‘of Fred’. She has only one function: to breed. If Offred refuses to enter into sexual servitude to repopulate a devastated world, she will be hanged. Yet even a repressive state cannot eradicate hope and desire. As she recalls her pre-revolution life in flashbacks, Offred must navigate through the terrifying landscape of torture and persecution in the present day, and between two men upon which her future hangs.

Masterfully conceived and executed, this haunting vision of the future places Margaret Atwood at the forefront of dystopian fiction.

'As relevant today as it was when Atwood wrote it…no television event has hit such a nerve …The Handmaid’s Tale is more relevant one year after the first season’ – Guardian

'Don’t expect to be gripped by a more potent or involving drama this year' – Telegraph

Reviews

Compulsively readable

Daily Telegraph

The mother of all feminist dystopian novels.

Sarra Manning, Red

The novel satirises the strain of evangelical puritanism in American culture and the objectification and control of women’s bodies. It is more broadly a contemporary myth of despotic power, and how such power deforms those who are subjected to it.

Tim Adams, Observer

One of Atwood’s finest pieces of work serves as a great reminder of what humanity is capable of.

Hannah Dunn, Red

Margaret Atwood is a wry and perceptive observer of society as well as an original storyteller

Cecilia Heyes, Psychologist

Brilliantly conceived and executed, this powerful evocation of twenty-first century America gives full rein to Margaret Atwood’s devastating irony, wit and astute perception

Essence

This is a novel pervaded by violence, sex, terror, but also by contemplation, analysis and – occasionally – by hope… Atwood shockingly reveals what we could be capable of.

Elly McCausland, Cherwell Newspaper

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9781784873189

    May 22, 2017

    Vintage Classics

    336 pages

    RRP $26.00

    Online retailers

    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
    • The Nile
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    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.co.nz

  • Hardback

    9781784708238

    October 30, 2017

    Vintage

    336 pages

    RRP $35.00

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    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
    • The Nile
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  • Paperback

    9781784871444

    October 3, 2016

    Vintage Children's Classics

    512 pages

    RRP $24.00

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    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
    • The Nile
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  • Paperback

    9780099511663

    December 1, 2010

    Vintage Classics

    336 pages

    RRP $19.99

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    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
    • The Nile
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  • The Handmaid's Tale
    Margaret Atwood

    Hardback

    9781841593012

    September 15, 2006

    Everyman

    392 pages

    RRP $34.99

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  • Paperback

    9780099740919

    October 25, 1996

    Vintage

    320 pages

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    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • Fishpond
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  • Audio CD

    9781786141637

    May 7, 2019

    Audiobooks

    RRP $50.00

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    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
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  • Audio Download

    9781473560925

    April 30, 2019

    Vintage Digital

    Online retailers

    • Audible NZ
    • Google Play Audio NZ
  • EBook

    9781473546967

    August 4, 2016

    Vintage Digital

    512 pages

    Online retailers

    • Amazon Kindle NZ
    • iBooks NZ
    • Google Play EBook NZ
    • Kobo
    • Booktopia NZ
  • EBook

    9781446485477

    May 15, 2012

    Vintage Digital

    336 pages

    Online retailers

    • Amazon Kindle NZ
    • iBooks NZ
    • Google Play EBook NZ
    • Kobo
    • Booktopia NZ

Extract

We slept in what had once been the gymnasium. The floor was of varnished wood, with stripes and circles painted on it, for the games that were formerly played there; the hoops for the basketball nets were still in place, though the nets were gone. A balcony ran around the room, for the spectators, and I thought I could smell, faintly like an afterimage, the pungent scent of sweat, shot through with the sweet taint of chewing gum and perfume from the watching girls, felt-skirted as I knew from pictures, later in mini-skirts, then pants, then in one earring, spiky green-streaked hair. Dances would have been held there; the music lingered, a palimpsest of unheard sound, style upon style, an undercurrent of drums, a forlorn wail, garlands made of tissue-paper flowers, cardboard devils, a revolving ball of mirrors, powdering the dancers with a snow of light.

There was old sex in the room and loneliness, and expectation, of something without a shape or name. I remember that yearning, for something that was always about to happen and was never the same as the hands that were on us there and then, in the small of the back, or out back, in the parking lot, or in the television room with the sound turned down and only the pictures flickering over lifting flesh.

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News
The Handmaid’s Tale Audiobook Read By Elisabeth Moss

Elisabeth Moss, star of the hit TV show The Handmaid’s Tale, has narrated the audiobook edition of Margaret Atwood’s classic novel.