Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Staff recommended reading: Alias Grace

Margaret Atwood is at the top of her form, superb indeed, as wordsmith, story designer, social critic, and humanitarian in her re-inhabitation of the legendary Canadian folk case of Grace Marks, 19th century indentured immigrant housemaid tried and convicted for abetting the murder of her abusive male employer and his housekeeper/lover. Bringing the feminism, empathy, class consciousness, and artistry of A Handmaid's Tale to this very different material, spinning it from multiple viewpoints, Atwood adroitly manages to leave Marks' guilt or innocence ambiguous while vividly illuminating class and gender provocations which could have righteously driven her to participate in the crime. The period recreation is impeccable, relevant, and undistracting – not precious at all. You just can't get better than Margaret Atwood at her best.

See if Mission Branch's copies of Alias Grace are available.


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