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Margaret Atwood announces a sequel to The Handmaid's Tale

Margaret Atwood announces a sequel to The Handmaid's Tale

Since its release in 1985, The Handmaid’s Tale has sold over eight million copies, and been adapted into an Emmy-winning, blockbuster television series. The newly announced sequel, The Testaments is set 15 years after Offred’s final scene in The Handmaid’s Tale and is narrated by three female characters. It is due for publication in September 2019. 

In her announcement, Atwood said: ‘Dear Readers: Everything you've ever asked me about Gilead and its inner workings is the inspiration for this book. Well, almost everything! The other inspiration is the world we've been living in.’

Following the election of Donald Trump in 2016, and the subsequent release of Hulu’s successful television adaptation starring Elisabeth Moss and Joseph Fiennes, the novel shot straight back to the top of bestseller lists.

Becky Hardie, Deputy Publisher of Chatto & Windus, says, ‘As a society, we’ve never needed Margaret Atwood more. The moment the van door slams on Offred’s future at the end of The Handmaid’s Tale is one of the most brilliantly ambiguous endings in literature. I cannot wait to find out what’s been going on in Atwood’s Gilead – and what that might tell us about our own times.’

The Testaments is not connected to the television adaptation of The Handmaid’s Tale.