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The Handmaid's Tale has ruined me...

(40 Posts)
IsItMeOr Fri 05-Jun-15 15:59:14

I didn't read it until a couple of years ago, and I loved it. I also read and loved Alias Grace, but found it hard to get into another one of hers I tried (Blind Assassin possibly?).

I also loved Never Let Me Go.

Are there other books that I can read which won't sorely disappoint?

storminabuttercup Fri 05-Jun-15 16:30:20

I couldn't get into the blind assassin but loved alias grace. Haven't read any others apart from handmaids tale. Not helpful I know :-D

littlejessie Fri 05-Jun-15 16:32:33

Try Geek Love (Katherine Dunn) OP. You need a strong stomach in places, but it's an extraordinary book. I prefer it to The Handmaid's Tale actually.

HeartsTrumpDiamonds Fri 05-Jun-15 16:33:37

You could try some Alice Munro too. I loved Runaway.

PotatoesNotProzac Fri 05-Jun-15 16:35:05

Poisonwood bible by Barbara kingsolver.

And maybe some marge piercy? Women on the edge of time?

1wokeuplikethis Fri 05-Jun-15 16:35:38

I read handmaids tale for GCSEs but ten years (ahem!) later I've just really thoroughly enjoyed reading the oryx & crake trilogy. Try the first one and you'll soon know if it's your cup of tea but I would highly recommend them.

Actually, I'm going to read handmaids tale again now. Thanks!

PotatoesNotProzac Fri 05-Jun-15 16:36:30

Or he, she, it by marge piercy

Takver Fri 05-Jun-15 16:37:08

I loved the Handmaid's Tale, but not so inspired by her other novels other than The Edible Woman (I actively disliked Oryx & Crake plus sequels). I also loved Never Let Me Go

Other books I like in the same vein:
The Dispossessed by Ursula Le Guin (I'd 100% recommend this - her novel The Left Hand of Darkness is also excellent)
Native Tongue by Suzette Haden Elgin

Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy is a classic, maybe a bit dated but still well worth reading.

Takver Fri 05-Jun-15 16:37:41

X-post with Potatoes, and yy to Poisonwood bible

NorahDentressangle Fri 05-Jun-15 16:39:35

I enjoyed Cat's Eye by her.

SolidGoldBrass Fri 05-Jun-15 16:43:25

Another recommendation for Native Tongue (and its sequel, The Judas Rose). They are odd books but they really stay with you - they were written partly as a linguistic experiment (the author is a professor of linguistics or something).

I also love Gwyneth Jones' Bold As Love series (five books altogether: Bold As Love, Castles Made Of Sand, Midnight Lamp, Band of Gypsies, Rainbow Bridge). Again, not to everyone's taste but the ideas in them are a bit fascinating.

PotatoesNotProzac Fri 05-Jun-15 16:57:43

Can't believe 2 recommendations for native tongue! I thought I was the only person who'd ever read it smile

Yy to the disposed.

And I loved tigana by guy gavriel Kay.

Anyone remember a book about a society where men and women live seperately. And it's about an illegal love affair between a man and a women?

JulyKit Fri 05-Jun-15 17:04:09

I also was really taken with Cat's Eye, and I thought Surfacing was brilliant, too. That was a long time ago, not sure I'd enjoy them so much now. Oh, and The Robber Bride.

Also, have you read anything by Joyce Carol Oates? Her books are really varied (and variable). The one I've liked most so far is American Appetites, which I thought was awesome.

I agree re. Rhona Munro. Her short stories are really satisfying. Love them.

Takver Fri 05-Jun-15 17:04:27

Potatoes - are you thinking of Walk to the End of the World / Motherlines by Suzy McKee Charnas? Didn't recommend it as the OP didn't request books to plunge her into extreme depression grin Though in fact this thread just sent me back to the SFMistressWorks blog, and I see there are two further sequels published at the end of the 90s, which sound a little more optimistic in tone.

Another possible for you, OP, and a bit more modern - The Carhullan Army didn't quite do it for me, but I know a lot of people who really rate it.

KatharineClifton Fri 05-Jun-15 17:09:13

Carol Shields, Alice Hoffman, Anne Tyler. Not a disappointing one there.

PeterParkerSays Fri 05-Jun-15 17:13:18

I loved Vikram Seth's An Equal Music if you've never read that.

If you know London it mentions places, and makes you think "oh, yes, I know where that is", but it's not essential to the plot if you don't.

DoItTooJulia Fri 05-Jun-15 17:13:40

Love anything by Kingslover, including the Poisonwood bible, but really enjoyed Prodigal Summer. Would really recommend that one actually.

What about Brave New World, Aldous Huxley and staying with the theme, 1984?

I liked Oryx and Crake, but really liked the Year of The Flood. I've got Maddadam and I'm waiting to get stuck into it!

ChazzerChaser Fri 05-Jun-15 17:16:38

The carhullan army

Glittermud Fri 05-Jun-15 17:20:24

Rose Tremain 'music and silence'

CosmicDespot Fri 05-Jun-15 17:21:33

The Yellow Wallpaper is tiny, but brill. I really enjoyed The Master and Marguerita, which is not tiny, but also brill. I have had The Red Tent highly recommended to me recently, but haven't looked it up.

nannyplumislostinspace Fri 05-Jun-15 17:34:51

I also loved cats eye and the robber bride! Read them as a teenager and they became favourites.

IsItMeOr Fri 05-Jun-15 17:40:49

Oh wow, thanks for all the responses. flowers

I have a feeling I tried starting Poisonwood Bible and found it a bit annoying. Is that the one where the family from the US go to Africa to "save" the locals, written from the perspective of one of the daughters?

I think I will give Ursula le Guin a try first, and then work my way through the other recommendations.

KatharineClifton Fri 05-Jun-15 17:43:04

The Red Tent is brilliant Cosmic and all her others.

Adds Anita Diamant to list smile

OttiliaVonBCup Fri 05-Jun-15 17:44:06

Burial Rites would be a good one.

PotatoesNotProzac Fri 05-Jun-15 18:11:51

Red tent is brilliant.

What about beauty by sheri teper.

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