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A dead child, a runaway slave, a terrible secret--these are the central concerns of Toni Morrison's Pulitzer Prize-winning Beloved. Morrison, a Nobel laureate, has written many fine novels, including Song of Solomon, The Bluest Eye, and Paradise--but Beloved is arguably her best. To modern readers, antebellum slavery is a subject so familiar that it is almost impossible to render its horrors in a way that seems neither clichéd nor melodramatic. Rapes, beatings, murders, and mutilations are recounted here, but they belong to characters so precisely drawn that the tragedy remains individual, terrifying to us because it is terrifying to the sufferer. And Morrison is master of the telling detail: in the bit, for example, a punishing piece of headgear used to discipline recalcitrant slaves, she manages to encapsulate all of slavery's many cruelties into one apt symbol--a device that deprives its wearer of speech. "Days after it was taken out, goose fat was rubbed on the corners of the mouth but nothing to soothe the tongue or take the wildness out of the eye." Most importantly, the language here, while often lyrical, is never overheated. Even as she recalls the cruelties visited upon her while a slave, Sethe is evocative without being overemotional: "Add my husband to it, watching, above me in the loft--hiding close by--the one place he thought no one would look for him, looking down on what I couldn't look at at all. And not stopping them--looking and letting it happen.... And if he was that broken then, then he is also and certainly dead now." Even the supernatural is treated as an ordinary fact of life: "Not a house in the country ain't packed to its rafters with some dead Negro's grief. We lucky this ghost is a baby," comments Sethe's mother-in-law.
Beloved is a dense, complex novel that yields up its secrets one by one. As Morrison takes us deeper into Sethe's history and her memories, the horrifying circumstances of her baby's death start to make terrible sense. And as past meets present in the shape of a mysterious young woman about the same age as Sethe's daughter would have been, the narrative builds inexorably to its powerful, painful conclusion. Beloved may well be the defining novel of slavery in America, the one that all others will be measured by. --Alix Wilber --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Morrison uses poetry and stream-of-consciousness style writing in parts of the book.
As I read the first couple of pages I already wanted to put the book down; the book did not catch me as most books do.
This book lets you see EVIL but it also shows how people love one another and can forgive and overcome.
Amazing story! Toni Morrissson has written a book that will keep you glued to the pages waiting to see what will be revealed next.Published 5 days ago by Sherry Simmerman
I came across Toni Morrison's work in college. We did close reading of her work, including this on, Beloved, in class. Read morePublished 11 days ago by Felicia Hayes
I just didn't like it at all, it put me off from the very first page and I read under the obligation of the Pulitzer. Read morePublished 13 days ago by Fontaine
Beloved is more than a book, it's a way of life, a tour de force of human emotion, symbolism, experience of slavery. Incredibly moving.Published 13 days ago by Anna S.
I usually buy books from amazon but today I bought it from this place hawthorne_academic. It was used, it also said very good with no more description about it. Read morePublished 14 days ago by jevm
Reading "Beloved" by Toni Morisson I had pretty much the same experience as wrestling with "the Sound and the Fury" by William Faulkner, 20 years ago: the same disoriented feeling,... Read morePublished 14 days ago by Marc L
Beautiful, deeply sad and thought provoking novel. Keep the tissues handy.Published 21 days ago by Sarah Switzer