Five must-reads by Margaret Atwood
Want to read her best work but don't know where to start? We've got you covered
Eating Fire: Selected Poetry 1965-1995
To get a sense of just how precise and incisive Atwood can be with her words, you need to read her poetry. Witty, lyrical and filled with punches-in-the-gut, Atwood's poems contain ideas and imagery that will tattoo themselves upon your imagination.
Negotiating With The Dead: A Writer On Writing
You won't learn how to write from this set of essays, but you will get some understanding of what it is like to be a writer and rare glimpses into Atwood's writerly life. This book is something like an undergraduate crash course on English literature, but far more witty than anything you're likely to have encountered in college.
Princess Prunella And The Purple Peanut
In case you thought Atwood is serious and literary, this deliciously silly story should set you straight. Princess Prunella is proud, prissy, pretty and, thanks to a curse from a wrinkly old woman, in danger of having a purple peanut become a permanent fixture on the tip of her nose.
The Maddaddam Trilogy
Yes, we're cheating but Oryx And Crake, The Year Of The Flood and Maddaddam together make up a single, fantastic story that reads more like a prophecy than science fiction. Here there be genetically modified animals like glow-in-the-dark rabbits, hybrid pigs, "perfect humans" and bedtime stories that will leave you hovering between hope and nightmares.
The Handmaid's Tale
In Gilead, women aren't allowed to read. They're divided into categories depending upon their ability to bear children. Scrabble is an illegal activity. Set in a futuristic America that is a intensely conservative, Christian theocracy, this novel is one of Atwood's most brilliantly imagined books.