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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast
 · 2yr ago · 1:55

THE TESTAMENTS (please denote how far you have read in the comments)

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"…Okay, the only way I read this book is by doing a swell on it. I mean, that's how I kind of I went into, you know, a thousand splendid Suns. And that's how I was like, no, I gotta do this. That's how I was like, Nope, we're doing handmaid sale now. Okay. Testaments, buddy. Read officially open, but please leave a note for how far you have read.…"

Ch. I only. Haha. First 3 pages. I hardly call that any spoiler. @NamelessJournal, @bowie, @loribpalmer

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 0:49

Inviting @rach to join us ☺️

"…And so excited to hear everyone's thoughts and feelings and opinions as you're reading along the way. I love doing this if you're well and it truly made my week to see this getting started. Whoop.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 0:26

Welcome @rach

"…Welcome, Rachel. Thank you for joining us. I hope you enjoy it as much as we have in the past on Swell, especially with these buddy reads. So welcome. Pull up a chair, take a seat and just enjoy the company as well with us spooky folks. So I'll catch you later. Bye.…"

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Ramya V

@Ramya · 2yr ago · 0:44

"…But I'm so glad that we got this thing going and welcome, Rachel. Good to have you here with us. Looking forward to hearing all of your thoughts on this one.…"

2

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 2:46

Finished II Precious Flower, ch 5. @NamelessJournal, @bowie, @loribpalmer

"…And testing her perspective because there are already seats of a woman can only do this, but a man can do this. And she's already questioning it in her mind so very intrigued as to where this book is going. I'm already just that second section, and I'm already in I'm loving it. I can see this is going to be another great Atwood book. And those that for now.…"

Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 2:52

Just finished Part II Precious Flower! Intrigued

"…I am reading it as though it is Alfred, aka June's daughter who she was separated with, and the reason I'm reading it that way is because there's that section in part two where she talks about having a memory of running through the forest or something. Now, Tabitha, the adoptive mother, made up this story about she went to his house and she picked her out of all the little girls or whatever.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 1:11

Up to Part V Van 📖

"…I got really excited when we got to that part because we're getting the perspective of people who are living outside of Gilead, which is fascinating because we don't really get that I don't think at all. Actually in The Handmaid's tale, I keep getting slightly confused between what I'm remembering from the Handmaids to tell the book and then also the show. But I'm pretty sure in the Handmaids tell the book.…"

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 3:52

Finished IV, The Clothes Hound.

"…Okay. I'm up to part five also. So I'm done with part four. So yeah. Wow. The world outside of Gilead that was not there in the book handmaid stale. So this is fascinating. And it's great to see all these riots March, whatever against Gilliard and the Silver girls or whatever those girls were marching for Gilliard, which is really creepy in itself. And it's like, give Baby Nicole back. Now. I am not one who's very good with predictions.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 2:01

More about IV ☺️

"…So this is why I'm just like, I want June perspective so much. I'm hoping it comes in. I'm also very curious to see how it continues to unfold, because a reader friend of mine, who I've known for a really long time, we're not really close to anything. We honestly just knew each other from the library where I worked and would talk books, and I still see her on good reads. And she essentially said she ended up being underwhelmed by this book.…"

2

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 4:44

Finished VI. Sooo good! 😊

"…Yes, she calls her Crystal, and it's kind of like, wow. And with her, you know, basically having a cesarean and left to die. I mean, Margaret Atwood does not hold any pull back, any punches. I mean, it's graphic. A lot of it is graphic. It's just disturbing. But you absolutely called a Bowie, like, wow. Yes, absolutely. She is June's daughter.…"

2

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 2:35

Finished VII, Stadium

"…I mean, gosh, they just shot, what, 20 women in the Stadium? Yes. Okay. There was always the wall in handmaidsdale and people were getting hung. Yes, the more educated people and all of that were getting hung. But I don't know. That scene of just crawling all these women in the middle of a Stadium and then shooting 20 blindfolded is almost like it is like war. It's like terrorism. It's like primitive. But that's what Galileo is.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 1:25

Finished VIII, Carnarvon. Loving this book so far!!!

"…And now, as a teenager, would they really recognize her face if she went to a March? I don't know. So I don't know how because she went there. Her parents got found out. But that's my only question right now with this book, but, yeah, no, it's so much fun. I'm loving this book so much. It's so interesting. It's so good. Tell me what you're so far.…"

2

Ramya V

@Ramya · 2yr ago · 0:59

Apologies for being a slacker!

"…So I haven't listened to any of your responses before this, but do hope to come back in a day or two with something to add on to this conversation, to see you guys around. And my apologies for being a slacker.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 3:27

Finished XII Carpitz.

"…I know it's going to take a lot of patience. It is to slowly pull this one at the seams and just rip. Yeah, like, she's slowly working it. And I'm just kind of like, Where is this? It's just like, Whoa, graphic. I'm in it. It's wonderful. I was never in it this much for a Handmaid's tale. I mean, I'll be honest, this book is like, I think handmade tale.…"

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Tidying the Shelf

@tidyingtheshelf · 2yr ago · 2:38

@bookishpodcast Thoughts on VI 🤓

"…I think she remembers hearing gunshots or something, but it's not clear if he's dead or not. The reason I feel a little foggy on it is because there's, like, all this stuff that happens with the husband and the TV show, and that's one of the downsides of having watched an adaptation before you read the books, because I try really hard not to conflate the worlds and the things that are different. That is just me prefacing in case I'm slightly wrong.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 1:17

Finished VI. @bowie

"…And that's all I'll say. I mean, obviously, I'm way Ahmed of you. So I don't want to say anything else for now. And I can't wait for you to get there. Oh, I will say that I did not feel the pace slowed down. I felt it just kept picking up and picking up and picking up. As a matter of fact, I feel the pace is really going to pick up more.…"

Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 0:48

@bookishpodcast Catching up tonight ☺️

"…I think the only reason I felt like it dragged is because we were getting more in the world from Agnes perspective, so it wasn't quite as like, I don't know, bouncing around as much. It just felt a little longer to me. But now that we're switching back to I believe this next section seven will be from aunt Lydia's perspective in the Stadium. So I'm a little scared.…"

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Ramya V

@Ramya · 2yr ago · 3:20

IX Thank Tank... chapter 28 in progress..thoughts

"…And while the first book made me wonder, dread and hope, this one I felt is a lot more action oriented and fast paced. It's interesting. The three POVs that Atwood has chosen, they contrast each other so well.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 4:55

Upto Thank Tank also for this Swell... @NamelessJournal

"…If you listen to other posts from Bowie, I love this books way more. And I know you said it's unpopular opinion. And I was talking to my husband and he said, yeah, people did not like the Testament, and I'm like, why not? It is way better. I mean, it's just so much faster. It just gives me so much more because I'll be honest, handmade sale was good, but it was a four for me, right?…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 3:05

Whining mumbling, my non-predictive ending... @NamelessJournal @bowie

"…Wake up and shelf the coffee. This is not what Appwood is going to give you. And suddenly that realization hit me that, no, she's not going to destroy Gilliard. She is not going to give reprieve for the characters. And potentially, I don't even know. Maybe there could be a lot more. There could be deaths that could be whatever. And ultimately, at the end of the book, maybe there's Gilliam. And there's the outside world and that's that.…"

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Ramya V

@Ramya · 2yr ago · 1:57

A couple of wild guesses

"…Okay. I'll just share a couple of my wild guesses over here, Shannon, because you just Ahmed me to they might be way off. I'm not sure how things are going to unravel, but my first guess is that Aunt Lydia is the mole, or at least she has some role to play in the happenings and Operation May Day and the smuggling of women from Ardua Hall to Canada across the border.…"

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Ramya V

@Ramya · 2yr ago · 3:05

What could have happened..

"…She talks about how they were doing great as a society and how they kind of got greedy and how she wishes that those nuclear reactors were deactivated before they ran their course of time. So that makes me wonder if what's happening right now in the country is nuclear fallout is some kind of a major catastrophic accident at one of their reactors. That kind of rendered a lot of people dead and made. That also perfectly explains why so many of the women here are infertile.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 1:55

Nuclear fallout affects both sexes equally?

"…If it was a nuclear fallout, which I totally missed out on while I was reading. I don't know how I missed that, but I did. And it was affecting fertility of women. Well, here's the thing. A nuclear clear fallout would equally affect fertility of men. Also. I mean, it's not like men are magically immune to that. So you could have as many handmaids as you want or as many wives as you want or whatever.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 0:36

Quote from VIII ch 21 💜

"…So I am in the middle of chapter 21 in part eight. And I just have to share a quote that I thought was amazing. Margaret Atwood just has these lines sometimes that really hit me. So. So it says at the time I thought, Why cry? You should be happy you got out. But after all that's happened to me since that day, I understand why you hold it in whatever it is, until you can make it through the worst part.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 1:50

Fertility in Gilead

"…That's why she ultimately wants June to have sex with Nick because it's like she I think, is making it clear that June is never going to get pregnant from the Commander because the commander is probably infertile. And I think that's implied in the Handmaid's Tale not totally explicit, but it's definitely very clear in the show, too. So I think that's what we're supposed to believe as well that the men's fertility has also been affected.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 1:57

IX & why I like Handmaid's Tale more so far!

"…I really loved all the world building that happens in The Handmaids Tale, and I think I just also loved seeing and experiencing the world through June's perspective. But again, I'm not sure how much that's influenced by the show as well in my experience, like maybe in some ways that is influencing it. But I also think it might be a personal preference where I tend to really like this isn't totally true, though. I really like novels as well, where you get multiple characters'perspectives.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 2:51

Prediction and retribution?

"…Okay, I have to say this. I missed that the commander was infertile in Handmade's tale. I did not know that. So I'm just curious. I mean, was it the TV show because I have not watched the TV show? So Ramya, have you watched the TV show? Because I'm trying to think, am I the only coolest one here or how did it completely slip?…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 1:21

Finished XII!

"…And now that I'm about halfway through, I have a feeling that the second half of this book is going to fly. So looking forward to hearing what the rest of you think once you hit the halfway point as well.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 0:30

A quote from XVII

"…Okay, Bowie, since you're doing quotes, I'm going to do a quote. Innocent men, tidying. The guilt sound exactly like Guilty men. As I am sure you have noticed my reader listen, listeners are inclined to believe neither. Isn't that great? I'm like, oh, my gosh at books. Just like, this book is so good, so good. I'm getting a high reading this book. All right. I'll catch you guys later. Bye.…"

2

Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 2:20

Finished XVIII!

"…But first of all, I have to say in part 17, I mean, the whole thing with Aunt Elizabeth, like tearing her clothes and, oh my gosh. Finally getting Dr. Grove in trouble is just like a lot like that. It's so upsetting. But at the same time, there's so much humor behind it because you can kind of tell. I don't know.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 3:37

Middle of The Reading Room XVIII

"…Now you have a Becca. Now you have three younger characters. You have the Becca who is the dentist daughter. You have another younger character, which is obviously Daisy, who is baby Nicole, and you have Agnes. And now Agnes. And what's her name? Becca or called sister or Aunt something and Aunt something else. But, yeah, it's just something keeping track of. But no, I'm loving the books. I'm loving the book. Now I need to read more.…"

3

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 4:59

Book finished. May the discussions begin. Haha! @NamelessJournal @bowie

"…So what happened with Aunt Lydia? Did she actually commit suicide? I know. There were knocks on the door. She had morphine. Did she get found out? There was hints that, you know, there was suspecting her and things like that and Vidala, I guess there's the assumption that Lydia killed her, but. Yeah, okay. Well, another buddy, Redone Ramya, you got me into this. And I was like, I don't know if I could keep up.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 2:47

Finished! @bookishpodcast My thoughts on what happened with June

"…But as far as that last moment in handmade sale, I can't remember what it is, but my memory of what happens. And please, like Ramya Lori Rach, whoever listens or joins us is that we know that June is pregnant by Nick, which is whose baby Nicole right. But she escapes, and that's what you're mentioning with her being taken away in the van. Right. So my memory or I should say my thoughts then are that okay?…"

2

Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 1:44

How I read the end + The Symposium?

"…And then the way I read Aunt Lydia's end like we get that final scene where you just hear the books coming, and it says a knock will come. Assuming based on all the contextual stuff before this, that she knows the eyes are someone I'm assuming the eyes are going to come after her. And, yeah, just everything she said about the morphine and taking her own life. That's my assumption of what she does there, though we don't see it.…"

Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 0:13

Rating + Cover! @bookishpodcast @NamelessJournal @loribpalmer @rach

"…And lastly, whenever everyone's done, I would love to hear your ratings for the book and also what you think of the cover. I mean, I just. I'm dying to know.…"

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 3:05

@bowie, @NamelessJournal, @loribpalmer

"…So I liked the ending of the symposium for the second book did not like it so much for the first book, and I completely missed it. That Offered was pregnant when the van came to take her. I'm trying to go to my memory going. Did I know that? Did I not know that? But it still begs the question of then everyone new Offered was pregnant. And if you say, well, she gave birth in Canada. Okay, fine.…"

Tidying the Shelf

@tidyingtheshelf · 2yr ago · 0:42

@bookishpodcast

"…I just listened to the first part of your salchanas, and my memory of it in the book is that they know that Alfred is pregnant when she ends up leaving. Which is is why it's such a big deal. So my guess would be that then the people in Gilead named her baby Nicole, based on what the wife of the household wanted to name her.…"

2

Ramya V

@Ramya · 2yr ago · 2:20

The ending kinda was a dampener😑

"…I just felt that there was too much of telling and less of showing it kind of got boring as I felt that Atwood was trying way too hard to tie up all the loose ends when ideally I would have liked it better had she left certain things for the reader to figure out on their own. I also agree with Yushanas about events in the escape appearing to be too contrived, the wound getting infected, the ship breaking down and the boat getting wrecked.…"

Tidying the Shelf

@tidyingtheshelf · 2yr ago · 3:16

My rating & cover thoughts!

"…I would recommend it to others, especially those who have read the Handmade Sale. I still very much feel that it's worth my time, but I probably wouldn't read it again, and that is a requirement for me for five star books, so I can't give it five stars. But I do give it four. And as far as the cover, like you were saying, Shannon, I love how they have designed since the Testaments came out.…"

2

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 2:48

Different genre. Soooo

"…Maybe call me out in about a couple of months. I might change to four at that point. Maybe. But, yeah, right now, when I first read, I'm like, oh, it's just so much fun. That's where my five star comes from. Sorry. Would I read it again? Okay. No, I won't read it again. There are very, very, very few books that I would read again.…"

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Bowie Rowan

@bowie · 2yr ago · 1:13

@bookishpodcast I WOULD but that doesn't mean I WILL lol

"…Okay to quickly respond to your question. Yes. I would read against the Loveless World again, which is why I gave it five stars. However, will I read against the Loveless World again, then that is the question because there are so many books to read. So I feel like it's important with five star books to say there is a chance that I would read it again. Will I definitely read it again?…"

Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 3:35

@bowie, @NamelessJournal peer pressure! 🤪

"…I didn't finish the physical read. I was only 30%, and then I stopped. And then a friend of mine borrowed the book because she wants to come to book club. My neighbor and I said, sure, here you go. Yeah, I wouldn't. I mean, although I am intrigued by that. I don't know. There are a lot of books, you know. You're like, do you really want to read it?…"

2

Lori Palmer

@loribpalmer · 2yr ago · 2:59

Just finished it!!

"…The writing was beautiful, and it was good to get continuation of the story and all those things. But everybody must read this book, and I don't necessarily think a five star means that I would read it again just to continue that discussion as well. I don't reread a whole lot of books, and just because I wouldn't reread them doesn't necessarily mean it's not a bad book. It just means so many books a little time. But yeah, I really enjoyed the book.…"

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Shahnaz Ahmed

@bookishpodcast · 2yr ago · 2:54

@bowie, @NamelessJournal, @loribpalmer

"…I just liked that history lecture with this one, not with the handmade scale with the handmaid scale. I was like, Please, what are you doing? I don't want to do this, but this one, yes, but I guess to each their own, but I don't know. It was just like, Spinal, and now I'm trying to be like, I want to read more spine novels kind of like this. This is kind of fun.…"

2

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