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The Color Purple 1st Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 1,120 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 860-1417533253
ISBN-10: 0156028352
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Novel by Alice Walker, published in 1982. It won a Pulitzer Prize in 1983. A feminist novel about an abused and uneducated black woman's struggle for empowerment, the novel was praised for the depth of its female characters and for its eloquent use of black English vernacular. -- The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

Now a Broadway musical

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize

Winner of the National Book Award

 
Published to unprecedented acclaim, The Color Purple established Alice Walker as a major voice in modern fiction. 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. Beautifully imagined and deeply compassionate, this classic novel of American literature is rich with passion, pain, inspiration, and an indomitable love of life.

“Intense emotional impact . . . Indelibly affecting . . . Alice Walker is a lavishly gifted writer.” — New York Times Book Review

“Places Walker in the company of Faulkner.” — The Nation

“Superb . . . A work to stand beside literature of any time and place.” — San Francisco Chronicle

“A novel of permanent importance.” — Peter S. Prescott, Newsweek


ALICE WALKER is an internationally celebrated writer, poet, and activist whose books include seven novels, four collections of short stories, four children’s books, and volumes of essays and poetry. Her books have been translated into more than two dozen languages. Born in Eatonton, Georgia, Walker now lives in northern California.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Mariner Books; 1 edition (2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156028352
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156028356
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,120 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,847 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
"The Color Purple" is one of the strongest statements of how love transforms and cruelty disfigures the human spirit that this reviewer has ever read. Alice Walker gives us Celie, 14 years old when the book opens, who has been raped, abused, degraded and twice impregnated by her father. After he takes her children away from her without a so much as a word, he marries her off like a piece of chattel to her husband, who is so cold, distant and inhuman to her that she can only refer to him as Mr; and this person deprives her of her sister Nettie, the only one who ever loved her.

Celie manages to survive by living one day at a time. Her life is a series of flat, lifeless panoramas painted in browns and grays. Into this existence, if you can call it that, comes Shug Avery, her husband's mistress, who shows Celie her own specialness and uniqueness. A lot has been made about lesbianism in this book and all of it is beside the point. Celie isn't a lesbian, she is a human being in need of love and Shug Avery helps Celie realize that she is somebody worth loving and caring about. When Celie hurls her defiance into Mr's face -- "I'm poor, I'm black, I may be ugly... but I'm here", she is making an affirmation not only to him, but to the whole world; the reader can only say, along with Shug Avery, "Amen".

When Celie finds the strength to leave Mr, he is left to face the reality of himself and what he sees isn't pretty; his transformation humanizes him and allows Celie to call him Albert, recognizing him as a person, as he finally recognizes her as one.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
"The Color Pruple" provides a disturbing yet realistic account into the life of Celie, a young black woman with a tragic, abusive past who learns how to survive, how to let go of the past, and most of all how to love. I thought the medium with which Walker chose to write her book was perfect, the diary form of the novel establishes a immediate, intimate connection to the reader right from the start. Walker draws you in from the beginning, starting her book with a fairly graphic, explicit account of the physical abuse Celie's father subjected her to. I find Celie one of the most inspirational characters I have ever read about, she makes you believe that even in the darkest moments one can find hope, because for most women, life cannot get worse than Celie's.
The language used throughout the book emphasizes Celie's lack of educationa and the naivety of a young girl, being black and living in a world where men dominate every aspect of life Celie has only learned how to be submissive, suppresing all her own hopes and dreams. Enter Shug Avery and Sofia, and we start to see the insiprational woman Celie is inside--Shug represents the independent woman that Cleie longs to be but cannot find the courage to become. Through Shug's love and encouragment Celie learns to stand up for herself. She emerges powerful, strong and intelligent.
When I first started to read this book I felt I couldn't get past the first few letters. The violence that Celie encounters is unbearable to read, and sometimes I felt uncomfortable with many of the passages describing the graphic sexual abuse/actions and violence. However as I read on I realized the heart of the story overshadowed many of the disturbing scenes.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
"I maybe black, I may be poor, I maybe a woman, and I may even be ugly! But thank God I'm here"
I have recently finished reading The Color Purple, by Alice Walker. This book had the most emotional impact on me, more then any other book I have ever read. It gives the reader a vivid and terrifying description of the life of a black woman growing up in the early twenty century. I read this book for my eighth grade English class. Everyone was assigned to read an independent reading book that relates and associates with the timeless classic, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Even though the main character in each book was placed in completely different situations, the same issues applied to both. There were both victims of sexism. Both their lives were dominated by men and Celie, in The Color Purple, was abused by them physically and mentally because they wanted to keep her in line and control her to a certain extent that doesn't allow her to think for herself. Scout, in To Kill a Mockingbird, had constant pressure upon her to be the lady society had shaped woman to be. The Color Purple opened up to an experience that many woman faced but was chosen to be ignored by the public. It expressed the harshness of reality and the pain inflicted amongst many woman of a different race during this period of time.
The Color Purple takes place in the south and spans thirty years in the life of Celie, a poor southern black woman. Alice Walker portrays the life of an innocent girl who is put through rape, physical abuse, teenage marriage, child birth and emotional abuse. Celie started out as a slave to her own family. Her mother is killed, and Celie and her siblings are raised by their father.
Celie goes through the transition of a slave to an individual.
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