The Color Purple is a story of survival, spirituality, and the strength of the bond between two sisters, spanning two continents and nearly three decades. To hear Alice Walker read her own Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is an absolute treasure. Walker’s voice is clear, strong, and true a testament to the courage and hope that carries the main character Celie through the story.
Celie’s circumstances are unimaginable poor, female, uneducated, motherless, and African American in the Deep South she is without anyone to protect her, except her God. It is her communication with God and her other savior, her sister Nettie that sustains her and supplies the narrative of The Color Purple. At the beginning of the novel, Celie’s communication with both God and Nettie is one-way, however, as Nettie has been swept away from her, all the way to Africa, and God sends her few signs he is watching over her.
As Celie survives sexual abuse from her stepfather, the death of her mother, the violent loss of her two children, and marriage to the monstrous and cruel “Mister”, she remains kind and loving through it all. When the beautiful and liberated singer Shug Avery comes into her life, Celie is opened up. Shug tells Celie, “I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.” Someone other than Nettie finally loves Celie, and she begins to truly see the beauty around her and believe her life is worth something.
In the preface, Walker says The Color Purple is the story of Celie’s journey from her place as “a spiritual captive” to “the realization that she…is a radiant expression…of the Divine”. Throughout the novel, Walker’s voice audibly breaks free of the bonds of abuse and cruelty into the freedom of spirituality and peace. It is almost as if Walker’s voice contains within each note the whole of the African American experience encapsulated in the courage and triumph of Celie’s story. Sarah Evans Hogeboom
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.
©1982 Alice Walker (P)2009 Alice Walker and Recorded Books, LLC
One of my favorite movies and this book is even better! Im usually skeptical about author narration but Ms. Walker did a great job.
I've seen the movie a million times... but I still couldn't put the book down. it was still exciting and suspenful. there is so much backstop and additional information. I think I could actually listen to it again. favorite movie and book!
Like many, I read this book when it was first published. I loved it. I loved the story and how the characters grew. This time, I listened to the audio book which brought the story even more alive. This time, I grasped the nuances and the many themes of human behavior.
I really enjoyed this book and the performance, couldn't stop listening. The performance was riveting and was like watching a play. The story was heart touching and unexpected....so much pain, loneliness, loss, and ultimately love.
English major, Attorney then CEO of 5000 employee company (in that order). I have over 1200 books in my Audible library.
The Color Purple is a truly fantastic book. It is the story of a young black girl, Celie, who is sexually abused by her father, birthed babies when she was just a little girl herself, and had her babies stolen away from her. She is married while still very young to an abusive man who needs a housekeeper and a caretaker for his outrageous misbehaving children. Now I know this sounds very depressing, but it is not a "downer" book. In fact, much of the book is humorous. The story line is very entertaining and you find yourself pulling for Celie throughout her life as she longs for her lost sister, and her lost babies. You grow to love Celie and her makeshift family. You also hate her husband and some of the other characters in the storyline. There are many great characters in this book - all are very well drawn by the author. Speaking of the author, instead of hiring a performer, she is the reader of her book. I usually find that when authors read their own work I am disappointed; however, Alice Walker does a really fine job as reader. I was not disappointed at all! The movie of this book is excellent too. Oprah Winfrey played the character Sophie in the movie. She was very young and I believe this was the first movie she was in. She really nailed the part - it was very good.
This story helped me heal through a rough patch. It helped me to understand a relationship that I had with a woman that changed my life. Beautifully written and wonderfully shared.
I enjoyed reading the, however I could not listen to the book. The author was terrible as the narrator. Sometime authors need to leave the narration to those that know what their craft.
I love reading and I love audiobooks!
This book is great. Alice Walker is an amazing writer and an amazing narrator. I have seen the movie probably over 50 times and it never gets old. If you think the movie is great then you will love this book. It goes so much more in-depth and I got a lot more information that the movie didn't provide. This book is a definite must-have!!!
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