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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

4.6 (3024 )
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  •  
    lottie 08-08-16
    lottie 08-08-16 Member Since 2015
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    31
    3
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    Story
    "Beautiful and astounding"

    A must for black feminist. A Beautiful and astounding account of how it was to be black and woman during a terribly hard time to be both.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashley 08-02-16
    Ashley 08-02-16 Member Since 2016
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    2
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    "Great"

    easy read and such a loving story. glad i took the time to revisit a classic

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 07-22-16 Member Since 2014
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    8
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    "Amazing!"

    So much better than the movie and so different as well. Your heart breaks and mends all at the same time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 07-11-16 Member Since 2013
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    52
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    "Beautiful book"

    A great story. Is a good story about learning who you are and how far you can go.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hippychicky 07-03-16
    Hippychicky 07-03-16 Member Since 2015
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    3
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    "Empowering"

    This book is one of the most empowering books I've ever read. It's told plainly and beautifully in a way I had no idea i'd enjoy so much. A thrilling story about life... It's ups and downs and having to just live it and learn from it what you can.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kirsten ebersole 06-28-16 Member Since 2015
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    "What a treat ..."

    It doesn't get any better than this!! Narrated by Alice Walker herself! I can't recommend it higher. 10 stars.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eleanore 06-21-16
    Eleanore 06-21-16 Member Since 2016
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    4
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    "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
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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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    "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

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