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Atwood’s ’The Testaments’ returns to Gilead, with hype

LONDON — Margaret Atwood is often asked if her new novel “The Testaments,” a follow-up to “The Handmaid’s Tale,” is set in a dystopian world.

She says: “Let us hope so.”

Atwood says several U.S. states have enacted laws limiting women’s reproductive control that she likens to Gilead, the theocratic republic of the books.

The hit “Handmaid’s Tale” TV series helped spur Atwood to revisit Gilead three decades after she created it.

“The Testaments” was published Tuesday with “Harry Potter” levels of hype. The fanfare included midnight book store launches and a celebrity gala broadcast to movie theaters worldwide.

The 79-year-old writer is unfazed.

Atwood said, “I think this kind of thing can be quite ruinous for a 35-year-old. Because where do you go from there? In my case, I think we know the answer.”

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