The Color Purple

The Color Purple

Book - 2003
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Beautifully imagined and deeply compassionate, this is the story of two sisters--one a missionary in Africa and the other a child wife living in the South--who sustain their loyalty to and trust in each other across time, distance, and silence. This classic novel of American literature is rich with passion, pain, inspiration, and an indomitable love of life.
Publisher: Orlando, Fla. : Harcourt, 2003
Edition: 1st Harvest ed
Branch Call Number: FICTION WAL
Characteristics: 288 p. ; 21 cm

Opinion


Featured Blogs and Events

A Q&A with Evelyn C. White, Author of Alice Walker: A Life

Interview by Colleen, staff member, Marketing & Communications In honour of the Library’s The Color Purple event series, and Alice Walker’s 75th birthday (February 9, 2019), we sat down with Evelyn C. White, journalist, relatively new Haligonian, and official biographer of Alice Walker: A Life. Alice Walker Born in Chicago, Illinois; and raised in Gary, Indiana; Evelyn has written 4… (more)


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t
TeaFloyd
Sep 18, 2020

Like many, I watched the movie before I read the book. Most of the time, you'd expect the movie to do the book no justice. This is not the case for The Color Purple. I love how the movie was missing things from the book because it changed the how we saw the fictional story without altering the nonfictional elements.

a
andreabilyeu
Aug 11, 2020

Listening to Alice Walker read her own book was amazing.

JCLAdamH Jul 17, 2020

Review for the audiobook as read by Alice Walker:

I'm not sure of much in this life, but I am convinced that the absolute best way to experience this book is to have the author read it to you herself. A beautifully poignant story read with disarming honesty and soulful tenderness. Walker's voice is a gift to be treasured.

Manateestarz Apr 29, 2020

A beautifully written book that really does affirm the human spirit. It is the story of Celie's awakening from self-hatred and abuse to love and reaffirmation. Beautifully written using vernacular in a way that is masterful, clear and poetic. A must read for fans of Alice Walker and American Literature.

m
MEILEEANDERSON
Feb 15, 2020

At a bar, some people will slam a shot of liquor while others sip a cocktail. This is a sipping book. You read The Color Purple slowly and let the story unfold at its own pace. It would be a crime to rush through this one. Beautifully written. Alice Walker's writing style carried me to a different time and place. Though there the pages tell tales of rape, abuse, and powerful yearnings there is also lightness with the dark. The characters invite the reader on a journey of hurt, healing, injustice, struggle, and triumph.

BethE_KCMO Feb 06, 2019

One of my favorite books of all time. Great characters and story! I loved the strong female characters and the struggles they had to overcome.

r
ranvapa
Nov 11, 2018

The characters in this book freely abuse Celie. The constantly put-upon girl grows up never expecting anything else.

Her redemption is as satisfying as can be, and the peace she finds is almost enviable.

The story is beautifully told, with the plot unfolding through letters written by Celie and her sister.

a
annagraceiaboni
Oct 25, 2018

The characters in this book are wonderful. It is a very raw book that is the story of two sisters bound by hard times.

g
Ghettostone
Sep 05, 2018

Ghettostone Review:
@ghettostone/facebook
www.ghettostone.com

"The Color Purple" by Alice Walker... A true classic novel by the African American writer who changed the relationships in the Black Community forever! The student of Toni Morrison of "The Bluest Eyes" fame and Zora Neal Hurston the writer of "Their Eyes Are Watching God".

The Color Purple story begins with the birthing process by a teen mom who is giving birth to a second child who is then taken and put up for adoption, a rough start to a hard story that features, a pre-industrial age agricultural small town of African Americans all struggling to make ends, and raise families without running into conflict with larger White Society.

A rich tapestry of smalltown life featuring a complex cast of characters leading lives of hidden sorrows, joys and aspirations. The chapters are condensed into "letters" between the main character "Ceillie" and God.

As a young teenager, Ceillie is traded for a cow as part of an arranged marriage to a widower simply known as "Mister", a single father with six kids, a dirty house, and no one to look after them. In short order "Ceillie" gets things in shape, as she organizes, cleans, combs hair, and transforms a hot mess into a livable environment. A rough beginning to a tough story. She openly questions "Mister's" parenting skills and finds out that he's extremely abusive.

A complex co-mingling of backstories narrated by self-taught "Ceillie" who now has matured into a stable human being although suffering through heartache, abuse, loneliness and underestimation at the hands of "Mister", to emerge as a educated, reader, who makes her own clothing while caring for the multiple relationships that she surrounded herself with. A twist to the story is the interjection of "Suga", "Mister's"former mistress, and "one who got away" who enters the story fresh from performing and recovering from a longterm drinking binge. A sirly woman, fresh from the Juke Joint circuit tour where she was the featured entertainer.

Even "Suga" gives into "Ceillie's" home cooking, empathy, and sweet ways as she surrenders to her down-home charms. The two become friends and build a alliance that gets stronger over time. And though time passes quickly in this story "Ceillie" and "Suga's" relationship grow and envelops the lives of the rest of the cast of characters that come in and out of their lives, each adding to an already rich and complex story. The Color Purple is deep and meaningful and is clearly a masterwork contained in just under 300 pages.

Reviewed by Ghettostone Publications Company- Editor/Chief Michael R. Brown
The Best Sellers Book Club highly recommends this title to all readers!!!
We agree that it should be considered as a classic tale that enriches the soul!

ArapahoeElia Jul 18, 2018

Beautiful, sweet, painful, heartbreaking, messy, and wonderful storytelling. Alice Walker is a master wordsmith.

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Age Suitability

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r
ranvapa
Nov 11, 2018

ranvapa thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

d
Davy_Anteater
Jan 10, 2016

Davy_Anteater thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

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Jian Feng Wang
Jan 04, 2014

Jian Feng Wang thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

Nahnsu Jul 09, 2013

Nahnsu thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

YHAQUERINIOLA Apr 22, 2013

YHAQUERINIOLA thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 13 and 13

K_ROK Jan 25, 2013

K_ROK thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

EuSei Jun 03, 2011

EuSei thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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Black_Dog_49
Apr 22, 2011

Black_Dog_49 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Notices

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EuSei Jun 03, 2011

Violence: This title contains Violence.

EuSei Jun 03, 2011

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

EuSei Jun 03, 2011

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

i
icerider
Jun 07, 2008

Violence: This title contains Violence.

Quotes

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JCLAdamH Jul 17, 2020

“I think us here to wonder, myself. To wonder. To ask. And that in wondering bout the big things and asking bout the big things, you learn about the little ones, almost by accident. But you never know nothing more about the big things than you start out with. The more I wonder, the more I love.”

britprincess1ajax Sep 25, 2016

"I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it."

britprincess1ajax Sep 25, 2016

"I hadn't realized I was so ignorant, Celie. The little I knew about my own self wouldn't have filled a thimble! And to think Miss Beasley always said I was the smartest child she ever taught! But one thing I do thank her for, for teaching me to learn for myself, by reading and studying and writing a clear hand. And for keeping alive in me somehow the desire to know."

britprincess1ajax Sep 25, 2016

"All my life I had to fight. I had to fight my daddy. I had to fight my brothers. I had to fight my cousins and my uncles. A girl child ain't safe in a family of men. But I never thought I'd have to fight in my own house."

Summary

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Nahnsu Jul 09, 2013

Celie, a fourteen year old black girl, lives with her dying mother and abusive father in the South. Her father rapes her, impregnating her twice, and then rids himself of the children after birth. She learns to obey men to the letter, to grow used to beatings, and has dropped out of school in order to do housework. However, her "cleverer" and "prettier" sister, Nettie, is allowed to continue her studies, and is lusted after by a Mr. Johnson, who is known to have a dark past with a woman named Shug Avery. However, Nettie declines the mans advances, and the father offers Celie instead. Nettie and Celie are separated for years, each making their own discoveries about love, god and bigotry.

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