• Out of a narrative shadowed by terror, gleam sharp perceptions, brilliant intense images and sardonic wit ― Independent
  • The Handmaid’s Tale is both a superlative exercise in science fiction and a profoundly felt moral story Moving, vivid and terrifying. I only hope it’s not prophetic ― The Listener

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A passage from the dystopian classic that became a 21st century phenomenon
‘The bell that measures time is ringing. Time here is measured by bells, as once in nunneries. As in a nunnery too, there are few mirrors.

I get up out of the chair, advance my feet into the sunlight, in their red shoes, flat-heeled to save the spine and not for dancing. The red gloves are lying on the bed. I pick them up, pull them onto my hands, finger by finger. Everything except the wings around my face is red: the colour of blood, which defines us. The skirt is ankle-length, full, gathered to a flat yoke that extends over the breasts, the sleeves are full. The white wings too are prescribed issue; they are to keep us from seeing, but also from being seen. I never looked good in red, it’s not my colour.’

Additional information

Weight 200 g
Release Date

17 October 2005


172 pages




Paulo Coelho


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