Margaret Atwood to write sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale

Margaret Atwood has announced she is writing a sequel to The Handmaid's Tale.

The Canadian author said The Testaments is inspired by the "world we've been living in".

Penguin said the novel begins 15 years after the end of The Handmaid's Tale, when the narrator Offred is being driven off to an "uncertain future - one either of freedom, more torture and imprisonment, or even death".

The Handmaid's Tale, a dystonian novel set in the near future in a totalitarian regime that was once America, became a cult classic when it was published in 1985.

It gained a whole new audience - and in light of the Trump presidency, many said a whole new meaning - when it was adapted into a television series starring Elisabeth Moss as the handmaid Offred who is being kept against her will to produce children to populate the regime.

The novel's themes of misogyny, women's rights, the power of language and societal division, have drawn comparisons with modern day America, including from Ms Atwood herself.

Talking about the book, Margaret Atwood said, "Dear Readers: Everything you've ever asked me about Gilead and its inner workings is the inspiration for this book. Well, almost everything! The other inspiration is the world we've been living in."

The novel will be published worldwide on 10 September 2019..