Thursday, August 4, 2011
The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood Review
The only reason I picked this up was the fact that I loved The Handmaid's Tale, so I knew I had to read another of her works also dealing with feminism.
Marian McAlpin is a twenty something year old woman living in Canada in the 1960's. She has a college education but works at a survey office with a Pension Plan and shares an apartment with a friend of a friend, her (awesome, loved her) roommate Ainsley who doesn't want to get married, but wants a child. She has a boyfriend, Peter, who engages her, but it's said the relationship isn't very committed. She has friends, such as the "Office Virgins", the crazy epic Duncan (he was even better than Ainsley), and Len, a ma who works on TV in England and who inseminates (with regret, thinking he seduced her and basically Ainsley raped him) Ainsley.
So, the basic plot is that Marian begins to not be able to eat food and the metaphor is she can't fit into the extremely sexist, feminine role. It starts out with meat, but she's sure she isn't a vegetarian, then other various foods, eventually she isn't able to eat anything. She doesn't have an eating disorder, though.
Although it wasn't as exciting as The Handmaid's Tale, it was still a very good book filled with metaphor and irony. The characters were interesting and the changing from first person to third person in the middle of the book was a great example of losding yourself because I have trouble writing in third person, I feel distant from my characters. I could also relate to the example of eating because lately I haven't been eating breakfast, I've lost my appetite for it.
5 stars, a fantastic, hard to forget, and highly recommended novel.