Top Picks: Margaret Atwood

We're celebrating Margaret Atwood's 80th birthday on November 18 with some of our top picks by the prolific author. If you're a fan of Atwood, there's no doubt that you know her stories are front and center today with the television series of one of her most popular novels, The Handmaid's Tale and the recent release of the very much anticipated sequel, The Testaments. But beyond some of her most popular works are more stories as unique and thought-provoking as the rest. 

The Blind Assassin was meta before meta was a thing with its story within a story and the layering of characters and plots. This personal favorite of mine, set in the 1940s, twists and turns with surprising reveals and intriguing family drama.  

The retelling of the myth of Penelope & Odysseus in The Penelopiad is told through Penelope's sharp voice and the voices of the twelve hanged maids. Playing with themes of class and gender, this retelling gives an alternate view of this classic myth.

The Edible Woman explores gender stereotypes, alienation and consumerism through the recently engaged character Marian. As she starts to lose focus in a world she no longer recognizes, the writing shifts between different points of view, highlighting the personal struggle she feels to be someone other than herself. 

Based on a true story, Alias Grace examines the aftermath of a life sentence for Grace Marks after being convicted of killing her employer. With no memory of what happened, an arrangement is made to meet regularly with psychiatrist Dr. Jordan to get to the bottom of her memory and the murder.

For even more recommendations around the same themes, our if you liked The Handmaid's Tale list has got you covered.

What's your top pick from Atwood?

We welcome your respectful and on-topic comments and questions in this limited public forum. To find out more, please see Appropriate Use When Posting Content. Community-contributed content represents the views of the user, not those of Chicago Public Library