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‘The Handmaid's Tale’ Author Margaret Atwood Reveals Sequel Was Nearly Stolen
By Thanussha Priyah, 11 Sep 2019
Image via Shawn Goldberg / Shutterstock.com
Margaret Atwood became a target of cyber criminals, who attempted to swipe the manuscript of the sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale.
The sequel, titled The Testaments, was almost looted through “fake emails” sent to the author and publisher, she told the BBC.
Atwood explained that the incident was a “phishing exercise” that could have ended up with “blackmail” or “identity theft.”
To save the then-unpublished novel from landing in the hands of the fervent thieves, her team attempted to secure the document with “a lot of code words and passwords.”
She was also fearful of having to follow through with the robbers’ demands if they had gotten hold of her possession.
Initial review copies were distributed using a different title in case people tried to steal them. Judges for the Booker Prize were additionally made to sign a non-disclosure agreement before they could read through the watermarked manuscripts, which were kept confidentially in drawers overnight.
Last week, online retailer Amazon mistakenly delivered copies of the novel to US customers before its scheduled publication date on 10 September 2019. It then apologized for the error and the author let the incident slide, despite all the secrecy behind the novel.
The Testaments has already received positive reviews by critics claiming it to be “addictively readable, fast-paced adventure” and “a rallying cry for activism.”
[via BBC, image via Shawn Goldberg / Shutterstock.com]
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