Aunt Lydia’s Forbidden Bookshelf: Three Books to Read After THE HANDMAID’S TALE


The first season of The Handmaid’s Tale wrapped up last night. If you’re already missing the object of your obsession, you can always read (or reread) Margaret Atwood’s book of the same name, since this dystopian nightmare fuel for feminists and anyone who appreciates not living in a totalitarian faith-based state has been keeping people up at night since it was first published in the 80s.

But maybe you’re ready to branch out a bit. What would Offred read if she wouldn’t get her fingers chopped off for doing so? Let’s find out what’s on Aunt Lydia’s forbidden bookshelf:


Bumpedby Megan McCafferty

A deceptively thoughtful concept hidden underneath a thick layer of teen dramedy: What happens when everybody over 18 becomes infertile and teen pregnancy is the hot new trend? Teens compete for lucrative birth contracts from hopeful couples while a religious sect believes that procreation + profit = big time sin. When two girls from these separate worlds collide, the unexpected becomes. . . expecting. (Be sure to check out the sequel, Thumped.)





The Chalice and the Blade: Our History, Our Future, by Riane Eisler

How did the world flip from worshiping the divine feminine to elevating the masculine? Let Eisler take you on a journey to probe the patriarchy and rediscover women’s past, then reimagine our common future.


Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith, by Jon Krakauer

Jon Krakauer’s suspenseful and powerful account of the people who went in search of their own American Gilead, where he plumbs the intersection of faith and corruption, child brides and fundamentalism. He begins with a crime among a sect of the Mormon church, and dives deep into the world of a violent faith that looks like something Offred would easily recognize.





About the Author:

Erin Downey Howerton is a public librarian in Kansas. Follow her on Twitter at @hybridlib.

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