When a terrorist attack on the United States leaves its President and most of its Congress dead, a group of revolutionaries take matters into their own hands. They call themselves the Sons of Jacob, and they suspend the US Constitution in a mad attempt to seize control as they form the Republic of Gilead. With a chauvinistic drive, they take away all the womens rights and begin to reorganize society. In this new regime, a class of women are separated and used as concubines. They are called handmaids, and their sole purpose is to procreate, a dark remedy the Sons of Jacob choose to fend off the threat of sterility. Offred is one such woman, her name itself a melancholy reminder that she is the handmaid of Fred the Commander. Despite regulations which dictate that Fred must only make love to Offred during the Ceremony, where his wife Serena is also present, he begins an illicit relationship with her. In a desperate attempt to get her pregnant, Serena uses her supposed knowledge of Offreds surviving family the daughter she lost while trying to escape Gilead to force her to sleep with her driver Nick. Offred begins to have feelings for Nick, and this soon sets her on a path towards what could either be her freedom or her complete destruction.
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Publisher: Vintage books
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