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The Color Purple [Paperback]

Alice Walker
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (361 customer reviews)
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Paperback, May 30 2003 CDN $12.76  
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Book Description

May 30 2003 Harvest Book
Celie is a poor black woman whose letters tell the story of 20 years of her life, beginning at age 14 when she is being abused and raped by her father and attempting to protect her sister from the same fate, and continuing over the course of her marriage to "Mister," a brutal man who terrorizes her. Celie eventually learns that her abusive husband has been keeping her sister's letters from her and the rage she feels, combined with an example of love and independence provided by her close friend Shug, pushes her finally toward an awakening of her creative and loving self.

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Review

"Superb ... A work to stand beside literature of any time and place." -- San Francisco Chronicle

About the Author

Best-selling novelist ALICE WALKER is the author of five other novels, five collections of short stories, six collections of essays, seven volumes of poetry, including the most recent Hard Times Require Furious Dancing, and several children’s books. Her books have been translated into more than two dozen languages.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Life itself June 6 2005
By Challey
Format:Paperback
Likened to the books THE HEART IS A LONELY HUNTER and the bestseller BARK OF THE DOGWOOD, Walker's tour-de-force is a book (and movie) not to be missed. Built around the context of the heated time in American history when one man was not equal to another simply because of his race and no female was equal in any realm, THE COLOR PURPLE weaves a beautiful story of a African American woman.
Alice Walker breathes life into a young, poor, and ugly girl named Celie. Celie is an amazing character because while she has suffered more than most humans will in a life time, before she was twenty years old, she is not a victim. She is simply living her life, as she would live it any other way. She is simple yet complex, a deep character in a world of confusion.
The background and world that the story is told in reveals the time when whites ruled and blacks survived. The novel deals with racism at its core and prejudice as well, especially against women. This novel will never grow old, the story will always be fresh, because untill we have conquered racism, prejudice, and social injustice and created a world where all are free, black and white, male and female, there is a urgent need for this novel. It is as contemporary as when it was written and the message of this outstanding work is still as needed as always. This is something all of us, especially women, should take a look at. THE COLOR PURPLE will stand out as one of the top ten books of the last century.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving and insightful Jan. 14 2011
By Bethany
Format:Paperback
Walker's story is both heartbreaking and triumphant. She shows amazing insight into human behaviour and presents her story in a unique format. I would recommend this book to anyone.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good Nov. 6 2013
By Miranda
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The shipping took a little bit longer than I expected but it was good overall. The package was hard to open as it was stuck to the book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Easy read April 15 2013
By Elaine
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed the writer's style. Well developed characters and storyline. Would recommend this to anyone wanting to curl up with a good book!
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Format:Mass Market Paperback
Our book club has recently taken up the "Southern literature" theme. The first book we read with this idea in mind was Lee's TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. It was a natural and started the ball rolling. We next tackled Jackson McCrae's BARK OF THE DOGWOOD (the paperback version, which just came out) with its funny scenes and jaw-dropping themes. So, I supposed that THE COLOR PURPLE was our next logical choice. We loved the previous two and we loved PURPLE. PURPLE is a great book that describes the life of black women who were forced to do things against their own will. Discrimination was a big problem during the time that this book takes place. Women had no rights and black people were treated like slaves. The book opens up with a fourteen-year old girl named Celie talking about how she was raped by her own father and had two children that were taken away from her by her own father right after they were born. If I were in Celie's place I would've ran away from home or I would've done anything to stop by father from raping me. I think that rape is the worst thing that could happen to a girl and in this book rape is something that almost every women went through. Abuse and racism were also a major impact in this book. Many of the women in this book were raped or beaten by the men of the house. For example, Celie was raped not only by her father but also by the man that she was given away to. She was also forced to cook for him, clean the house, and take care of his children. Sofia was beaten by her husband, Harpo, but she soon got tired of it and decided to leave him. Most women couldn't even work just because they were females and others were treated like slaves just because they were black. Sofia was a brave black woman in this book who didn't let anyone tell her what to do. Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent book! Feb. 2 2005
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is the most magnificent books I have read. Filled with sadness and turmoil, so full of truth....so determined. I came from a life of abuse (child). Though I have read mostly memoirs like NIGHTMARES ECHO, I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS and BEAUTY FOR ASHES to try and help aide in the healing process. I have found that this book COLOR PURPLE has also helped me in so many ways to understand the feelings that go on inside someone that comes from abuse. This is truly a page turner. So Magnificent.
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5.0 out of 5 stars How could anyone NOT like this book! July 24 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Are some people crazy? How could anyone not like a tale about goodness triumphing over evil? How could anyone not like justice and a happy ending? This is one of the most uplifting (after you get through the bad parts) books I've ever read. Celie is one of my favorite characters in all of the southern lit canon and the struggles she overcomes are mind-boggling. I guess when I think about it, it's understandable. I mean, there are those who don't like "To Kill a Mockingbird" or "Catcher in the Rye." It's unfortunate that some don't see the good in something.
Also recommended: BARK OF THE DOGWOOD and MERIDIAN
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5.0 out of 5 stars Nourishment for the Soul July 8 2004
Format:Paperback
I've read this book dozens of times and always find a new insight into myself or into human nature that I didn't see before. Walker's deceptively simple prose paints an elaborate physical and emotional landscape. I've had people tell me they couldn't finish it because it was "too depressing". If they would only finish! It is amazing to see Celie finally triumph and find love and spiritual peace. Truly a masterpiece.
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