Nerdette Book Club: Before You Read ‘The Testaments,’ A Look Back At 'The Handmaid's Tale' | WBEZ
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Book Club: ‘The Testaments’ Preview

Welcome to the Nerdette Book Club! It’s just like a normal book club but in podcast form, and you provide your own booze.

And the book we’re reading is The Testaments, Margaret Atwood’s new sequel to her 1985 dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale. Joining Nerdette’s Greta Johnsen is the wonderful Jill Hopkins, host of the Morning Amp on WBEZ’s sister station Vocalo, and the delightful Heather Havrilesky, who writes the Ask Polly advice column for New York Magazine.

What are the rules of a book club podcast, you ask? In this week’s episode, we give you a refresher on The Handmaid’s Tale, which you either A) never read but watched the Hulu adaptation and could use a reminder, or B) read in high school but hey that was YEARS ago.

Then, over the next three Fridays, we’ll all read the book together and talk about what’s happening, why a sequel to a 35 year old book is relevant today and whether the bastards really will get us down.

And we’ll do it in three big chunks. Here are your assignments:

  • By Friday Sept. 20, read The Testaments through Chapter 23 (pages 1-133)

  • By Friday Sept. 27, read The Testaments through Chapter 46 (pages 134-282)

  • By Friday Oct. 4, finish The Testaments (pages 283-end!)

  • Listen to this podcast each of those Fridays!

And hey, we want your crazy interpretations too! Share your thoughts with us by recording your voice with your smartyphone. (Please be succinct!) Then email the audio file to, preferably by Tuesday evenings. You may hear yourself in an episode!

And when you need to tweet or Instagram something really important about the club, just use #NerdetteBookClub on the internets, and so will we.

OK let’s do this!

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