Margaret Atwood


Margaret Atwood

Easton Press Margaret Atwood books

The Blind Assassin - signed modern classic - 2012

Franklin Library Margaret Atwood books

The Robber Bride - signed first edition - 1993


Margaret Atwood signed

Who is Margaret Atwood?

Margaret Eleanor Atwood, a prolific Canadian author and poet, was born on November 18, 1939, in Ottawa, Ontario. Raised in the Canadian wilderness, Atwood developed a deep appreciation for nature and storytelling from an early age. Her childhood experiences laid the foundation for themes that would later emerge in her writing. Atwood's formal education included studying English at the University of Toronto, where she earned her Bachelor's degree in 1961, and later pursued graduate studies at Radcliffe College, Harvard University. During this time, she immersed herself in literature and poetry, setting the stage for a literary career that would span decades.

Her first collection of poetry, Double Persephone, was published in 1961, and she continued to gain recognition for her poetry throughout the 1960s. Atwood's early works laid the groundwork for her exploration of themes such as feminism, identity, and the relationship between individuals and society. In 1969, Margaret Atwood published her debut novel, The Edible Woman, which marked the beginning of her foray into fiction. However, it was with The Handmaid's Tale (1985) that Atwood achieved international acclaim. This dystopian novel, set in a future totalitarian society, has become a landmark work in feminist literature and a staple in discussions about women's rights and social control. Atwood's diverse body of work includes novels, poetry, essays, and short stories. Her novels often blend elements of speculative fiction, science fiction, and historical fiction. Cat's Eye (1988) This novel delves into the complexities of female friendship and the impact of bullying. It follows the life of a successful artist, Elaine Risley, as she reflects on her past., Alias Grace (1996) Inspired by a true story, this historical novel revolves around the life of Grace Marks, a convicted murderer in 19th-century Canada. Atwood skillfully weaves together elements of crime, psychology, and societal expectations., and The Blind Assassin (2000), which won the Booker Prize, are among her many acclaimed best books.

Happy Endings is a short story written by Margaret Atwood. Originally published in 1983, the story is known for its unconventional structure and exploration of narrative conventions. Atwood uses various scenarios and outcomes to highlight the predictability of traditional storytelling. The story is divided into six sections, labeled A to F, each presenting a different version of events. Atwood examines different paths that characters and narratives might take, often subverting typical storytelling expectations. The title Happy Endings is somewhat ironic, as the story challenges the notion of a fixed and satisfying conclusion. The various scenarios presented in "Happy Endings" reflect on the nature of storytelling, the role of characters, and the inevitability of certain plot developments. Atwood's exploration of these themes offers readers a thought-provoking and metafictional experience.

Siren Song is a poem by Margaret Atwood, not a novel. The poem was published in 1974 as part of Atwood's collection titled You Are Happy. Siren Song is a contemporary take on the classical Greek myth of the Sirens, who were mythical creatures that lured sailors to their doom with their enchanting songs. In Atwood's poem, the Siren herself speaks, providing a unique perspective on the myth.

In addition to her literary contributions, Margaret Atwood is known for her advocacy for environmental causes and human rights. She has been an outspoken critic of censorship and an advocate for the power of literature to illuminate societal issues.

Margaret Atwood's impact on literature is immeasurable. Her ability to blend genres, explore complex themes, and create vivid, thought-provoking narratives has earned her a place among the most influential writers of her generation. In 2019, she received the Booker Prize again for The Testaments, a sequel to The Handmaid's Tale, solidifying her enduring relevance and influence in the literary world. The Testaments continues the narrative and provides new perspectives on the dystopian world Atwood created in The Handmaid's Tale.

Margaret Atwood's best books and literary contributions have earned her numerous awards, including the Governor General's Award, the Booker Prize, and the Giller Prize. In 2019, she was awarded the Booker Prize jointly with Bernardine Evaristo for The Testaments.


The Robber Bride

Margaret Atwood's influence extends far beyond her native Canada. Her works continue to be studied in academic settings, adapted for television and film, and cherished by readers worldwide. Atwood's ability to blend compelling storytelling with incisive social commentary has solidified her status as a literary icon.


Margaret Atwood Books
 

The Robber Bride

Margaret Atwood's The Robber Bride is inspired by "The Robber Bridegroom," a wonderfully grisly tale from the Brothers Grimm in which an evil groom lures three maidens into his lair and devours them, one by one. But in her version, Atwood brilliantly recasts the monster as Zenia, a villainess of demonic proportions, and sets her loose in the lives of three friends, Tony, Charis, and Roz. All three "have lost men, spirit, money, and time to their old college acquaintance, Zenia. At various times, and in various emotional disguises, Zenia has insinuated her way into their lives and practically demolished them. To Tony, who almost lost her husband and jeopardized her academic career, Zenia is 'a lurking enemy commando.' To Roz, who did lose her husband and almost her magazine, Zenia is 'a cold and treacherous bitch.' To Charis, who lost a boyfriend, quarts of vegetable juice and some pet chickens, Zenia is a kind of zombie, maybe 'soulless'" (Lorrie Moore, New York Times Book Review). In love and war, illusion and deceit, Zenia's subterranean malevolence takes us deep into her enemies' pasts.
 
 

The Blind Assassin

Margaret Atwood takes the art of storytelling to new heights in a dazzling novel that unfolds layer by astonishing layer and concludes in a brilliant and wonderfully satisfying twist. Told in a style that magnificently captures the colloquialisms and clich├ęs of the 1930s and 1940s, The Blind Assassin is a richly layered and uniquely rewarding experience.

It opens with these simple, resonant words: "Ten days after the war ended, my sister drove a car off the bridge." They are spoken by Iris, whose terse account of her sister Laura's death in 1945 is followed by an inquest report proclaiming the death accidental. But just as the reader expects to settle into Laura's story, Atwood introduces a novel-within-a-novel. Entitled The Blind Assassin, it is a science fiction story told by two unnamed lovers who meet in dingy backstreet rooms. When we return to Iris, it is through a 1947 newspaper article announcing the discovery of a sailboat carrying the dead body of her husband, a distinguished industrialist.

For the past twenty-five years, Margaret Atwood has written works of striking originality and imagination. In The Blind Assassin, she stretches the limits of her accomplishments as never before, creating a novel that is entertaining and profoundly serious. The Blind Assassin proves once again that Atwood is one of the most talented, daring, and exciting writers of our time. Like The Handmaid's Tale, it is destined to become a classic.
 
 

Margaret Atwood quotes

Margaret Atwood has shared many thought-provoking insights throughout her career. Here are some quotes attributed to Margaret Atwood:

"A word after a word after a word is power."

"War is what happens when language fails."

"In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt."

"Stupidity is the same as evil if you judge by the results."

"I would like to be the air that inhabits you for a moment only. I would like to be that unnoticed and that necessary."

"A voice is a human gift; it should be cherished and used, to utter fully human speech as possible. Powerlessness and silence go together."

"The answers you get from literature depend on the questions you pose."

"Another belief of mine: that everyone else my age is an adult, whereas I am merely in disguise."

"We lived in the gaps between the stories."

"You may not be able to alter reality, but you can alter your attitude towards it, and this, paradoxically, alters reality. Try it and see."

Margaret Atwood's work often explores themes related to power, identity, and societal structures. Her quotes reflect her insights into human nature and the world around us.

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