A comic look at a world gone mad

The Heart Goes Last: A Novel (Positron) - Margaret Atwood

I’ve read that Ms. Atwood prefers her dystopian books to be called speculative fiction rather than science fiction, since her invented worlds could actually happen.  And while the Positron Project isn’t a fantasy world, it’s a strange world indeed.  A couple struggling to survive in a manic dangerous world are given a chance to live at Consilience where they will live one month in a lovely “normal” neighborhood in their own home and alternate months as slave workers in a prison.  Of course, all is not as it seems.


This is a lighter book than I expected from Ms. Atwood, though there are certainly undercurrents of horror and evil.  I was pulled into the story in the beginning but it began to turn me off a bit with the Elvis sexbotics.  But then again as mentioned, I hadn’t expected such a light hearted book about such a dark subject.  There is a very suspenseful moment about three quarters of the way into the book and I had no idea which way it would go – will she or won’t she – will love triumph.  The author expertly directed that section of the story.


She has made many social and political statements with the writing of this book and I think a book club would enjoy hashing over the meanings.  This book will alight much literary discussion.  I can tell through each page what fun the author was having writing this book and I also had some fun moments.  I’m glad I read it as I wouldn’t have wanted to miss anything Ms. Atwood wrote.  But personally I prefer the drama of “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “Alias Grace”.  Due to the excellence of the writing and social commentary behind the humor and the fact that I’ll still be thinking about this book for weeks to come, I will give it 4 stars.


This book was given to me by the publisher through Edelweiss in return for an honest review.