The Testaments by Margaret Atwood, Women Talking by Miriam Toews on New York Times 100 'notable books' of 2019
The New York Times has released their list of 100 "notable books" of 2019.
The Testaments is set 15 years after the events of The Handmaid's Tale and includes the "explosive testaments" of three women. The book answers questions on the inner-workings of Gilead, the oppressive dystopia where Offred, the novel's original narrator, was stripped of her freedoms and forced to be a handmaid for powerful men.
Atwood, 80, has been publishing poetry, fiction and nonfiction since the 1960s. Her acclaimed books include The Handmaid's Tale, Alias Grace, Oryx and Crake and The Edible Woman. She has won several awards for her work including the Governor General's Literary Award, the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Man Booker Prize.
Women Talking was published in Canada in 2018, but came out in the U.S. this year.
In the novel, eight Mennonite women have 48 hours to make a decision that will impact every woman and child in their community. Women Talking is inspired by the real-life case in the 2000s, when women in a Bolivian Mennonite community began whispering that they were waking up groggy, in pain, feeling like they had been sexually molested.
Toews is the author of several acclaimed novels, including A Complicated Kindness, which won the Governor General's Literary Award for English-language fiction in 2004 and won Canada Reads in 2006, and All My Puny Sorrows, which won the 2014 Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize and was shortlisted for the 2014 Scotiabank Giller Prize.
No Canadian titles made the top 10. The top 10 is:
- Disappearing Earth by Julia Phillips
- The Topeka School by Ben Lerner
- Exhalation by Ted Chiang
- Night Boat to Tangier by Kevin Barry
- Say Nothing by Patrick Radden Keefe
- The Club by Leo Damrosch
- The Yellow House by Sarah M. Broom
- No Visible Bruises by Rachel Louise Snyder
- Midnight in Chernobyl by Adam Higginbotham