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The Color Purple Audiobook

The Color Purple

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Audible Editor Reviews

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

Publisher's Summary

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

What the Critics Say

  • Pulitzer Prize, Fiction, 1983

"[A] striking and consummately well-written novel." (New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (2554 )
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4.6 (1991 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Eleanore 06-21-16
    Eleanore 06-21-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
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    Story
    "Amazing"
    What does Alice Walker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    This is a fantastic book to listen to on audible. I have read this book before and I enjoyed it, but listening to it was added so much more to the story. Alice Walker is an amazing narrator and she brings her characters to life in a way that when I read the book my imagination wasn't able to do on my own. I thoroughly enjoyed this whole experience!!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tani Rae Standridge 06-17-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "why didn't I read this before?"

    this is a fantastic book. it has incredible writing and characters and vivid story. loved it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    T 06-14-16
    T 06-14-16 Member Since 2016
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    "A true treasure"

    I truly enjoyed listening to The Color Purple. The narrator made the book so vivid, so live that I felt like I was there in the screens with the characters. Listening to this audiobook was truly a great pleasure.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Newark, DE, United States 06-13-16
    Amazon Customer Newark, DE, United States 06-13-16
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    11
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    "extraordinary read"

    I love hearing and a narrator describe the environment and the characters fears and hopes for joy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    April 06-10-16
    April 06-10-16 Member Since 2015
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    6
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    "A must read. this is a wonderful book."

    this book is amazing. I've seen the movie countless times but never read the book. it was wonderful to get the full story and experience the love, loss, pain, and joy of Celie's life. I know I'll listen again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    m_hurlbut 06-10-16
    m_hurlbut 06-10-16
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    "Required reading for American Minority literature course"

    I selected this book for a college course I'm taking. This book could not have been more enjoyable. Now I have to see the movie! This book was hard to put down, I give it two thumbs up and five stars!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marilyn 06-01-16
    Marilyn 06-01-16 Member Since 2016
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    "love the story all over again. Discovered new deta"

    love the story all over again. discovered new details about the story that I didn't know before.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer Greater Cincinnati, OH & NW FL, USA 05-28-16
    Kindle Customer Greater Cincinnati, OH & NW FL, USA 05-28-16 Member Since 2016
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    11
    3
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    "Memorable story!"

    Ever since I saw the movie when it came out, I've been wanting to read the book. If you think the movie is good, the book is better! The last couple chapters are touching. Celie was dealt a hard life, yet she never gives up. Her courage lands her with the ability to make her own way, which leads her to a reward of happiness and respect.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elana 05-26-16
    Elana 05-26-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Fantastic!"

    This book was inspiring, well written and well read. I loved the personal journey the characters made and the description of it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    carolyn reed 04-05-16 Member Since 2016
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    "A little disappointed"

    The Color Purple is one of my favorites. I have watched the movie so many times I can re-inact almost the entire movie. I have read the book a few times, and I enjoyed it as well. So it makes me sad to say I did not enjoy the audio version not one bit. You can constantly hear the narrarator swallowing her spit, there was even a snort in between a pause. Very unhappy with the reading of this book. I should have just got it on my kindle!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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