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The Color Purple Paperback – May 1992

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Paperback, May 1992
--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Harcourt (May 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0685571467
  • ISBN-13: 978-0685571460
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (370 customer reviews)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


"The Color Purple has been read and reread by millions. Forget lilac, mauve and lavendar: this is the royal purple." The Times --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

Banner] Now a Tony Award-Winning Broadway Musical The Color Purple is the story of two sistersone a missionary to Africa and the other a child wife living in the Southwho remain loyal to one another across time, distance, and silence. Beautifully imagined and deeply compassionate, this classic 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."The 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 "The Color Purple is an American novel of permanent importance."Newsweek "Marvelous characters . . . A story of revelation . . . One of the great books of our time."--Essence [banner] Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award [bio] Bestselling novelist Alice Walker is also the author of three collections of short stories, three collections of essays, six volumes of poetry and several children's books. 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 the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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I am fourteen years old. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Challey on June 6 2005
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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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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Format: Paperback
The Color Purple is an amazing book to read. It was very rewarding for me to read because it opened my eyes to a new way of thinking about life, love, and religion. Alice Walker is able to capture the feelings of each character and their reactions to life, especially Celie. Celie is a poor, black girl who lives in the south and struggles throughout life. I felt some strong aspects of this book were the plot, the writing style, and the Characters.

In my opinion, the plot of the story is well done because you feel the anger that Celie is going through. The story begins very abruptly with all the struggles Celie is faced with, like the abuse by her father and the death of her mother. The story begins with her father saying, "You better not tell nobody but God. It'd kill you mammy." (pg 1. line 1). She is also forced to marry a man she hates and she is very angry with her life, until her husband's lover, Shug Avery, comes to live with them, then things begin to change. Shug teaches Celie how to love and how to speak for herself. I love the way Shug and Celie's relationship develops throughout the book. They grow to love each other and care for each. This allows Celie to feel more respected.
The book is written in a letter formation. The book starts out with Celie writing to God and then she begins to converse with her sister, Nettie. When Celie was talking to God, she was in need of someone to talk to. Then she talked to Nettie about her life and what is happening in it. I love the letter formation because it allows the reader to get a bigger perspective of the characters and a wider view of the story. When Celie is writing to God you can really understand how she is feeling and what she is thinking. You get to see the characters through their eyes and not someone else's eyes.
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By A Customer on May 20 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Color Purple by Alice Walker is a great book and I recommened it to everyone. One of the themes could be that all bad things can be good. Celie is raped and forced to marry a man she doesn't like and he beats her. When she runs away she starts a business and comes back with money. That is not the only theme in the novel there are many. Alice Walker develops the character in a way that you can relate to them. Walker describes Celie's emotions so well you can picture her expressing those emotions. You can feel Celie's pain when she writes to God saying, "Mr. come that evening. I'm in the bed Crying," (Letter 5, Paragraph 2, pg 7).You can imagine her fear and picture her in bed crying. When Shug Avery comes into the picture you see Celie and Shug's relationship grow when they run away. Celie found out Shug loved someone else, "My Heart broken. Shug found someone else," Celie feels she has lost Shug because they have grown so close. Celie changes so much through the novel and Walker ends the novel showing how much she has changed. When Nettie comes home and they see each other for the first time Celie remarks how young she feels again and how alive she is. In the beginning of the novel Celie would have rathered die then live. She changes alot because of Shug. The plot of the story is how Celie becomes friends with Shug Avery and how she try and learn to become independent woman, get rid of Albert, and Celie trys to find herself without Nettie's help. They come to learn what love is from the nature of God. Celie only writes to God.
When you first start to read the novel it is hard to follow because she writes in all letters and since you don't know her husbands name it is hard to understand.
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