The Blind Assassin

Atwood, Margaret

Book - 2001
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Blind Assassin
"The Blind Assassin opens with these simple, resonant words: "Ten days after the war ended, my sister Laura drove a car off a bridge." They are spoken by Iris, whose terse account of her sister's death in 1945 is followed by an inquest report proclaiming the death accidental. But just as the reader expects to settle into Laura?s story, Atwood introduces a novel-within-a-novel. Entitled The Blind Assassin , it is a science fiction story told by two unnamed lovers who meet in dingy backstreet rooms. When we return to Iris, it is through a 1947 newspaper article announcing the discovery of a sailboat carrying the dead body of her husband, a distinguished industrialist."--Cover p. [4].

Publisher: New York : Anchor Books/Random House, 2001
Edition: 1st Anchor Books ed
ISBN: 9780385720953
Branch Call Number: FICTION ATWOOD 2001
Characteristics: 521 p. ;,21 cm


From Library Staff

A complex web of relationships, a view into life in the 1930s, a novel within a novel about the planet Zycon: only Margaret Atwood could make it work.

From the critics

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Jun 05, 2014
  • Eosos rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Somehow I always find my favorite books the hardest to write reviews on. I don’t want to gush but there are no negatives to discuss.
The story isn’t fast or action packed, it lets one woman tell the story of her life in a calm and ordinary way. Stories within stories create an interesting flavour to the tale. Retrospection and thoughtfulness rule the story while you slowly learn of her sister and parents and lover and husband.
I absolutely adored this book, from characters to setting and everything in between. Atwood has such a fabulous way with words that I want to savour all of them.

May 31, 2013
  • finn75 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Loved this book of a woman looking back at her past and her relationship with her much more glamorous sister. Great twist.

Nov 02, 2012
  • pridi_o rated this: 5 stars out of 5.


Jul 28, 2012
  • thoughtspf rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

I enjoyed the writing style, but the story line went from all-over-the-place could turn out interesting to boring somewhere about halfway through the book.

Jul 01, 2012
  • Jessi52 rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Very slow, I can usually read a book in a day or two, this one took 2 weeks, I kept falling asleep. did finish it. Not near as good as Kate Morton's book, could not put those down.

Oct 01, 2011
  • vcc rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

I usually adore Ms. Atwood's writing, and eagerly consume each of her words, however, this novel of a story within a story was rather tedious and dry. It lacked her usual wittiness, or rather, it lacked much of Atwood's charm.

Sep 15, 2011
  • teatreetiffany rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

I am a self-confessing Margaret Atwood fan. Her development of the characters in this novel is the best I've read in her works. They are vivid and she gives them time to unfold through the sometimes confusing (aren't they always?) flashbacks that shape the action of this novel.

Jun 02, 2011

The first selection for an online book club sponsored by Atlantic Magazine. 1book140 is "an international book club inspired by the One Book, One City programs. Every month we all choose a book to read. The following month we read it. The discussion takes place largely on Twitter, though we will also link to people's blogs and Tumblr and Facebook pages as well, and provide regular summaries of the conversation at"

Mar 02, 2011
  • Algonquin_Lisa rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Not an easy novel, but I think it's worth the effort. Basically, this is a novel within a novel, very dense. Definitely one of Atwood's more complex works.

Jan 09, 2011
  • Iluv2read rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Tough to get into it but after about 200 pages started to be interesting. 659 pages
Ended up quite enjoying it.

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