My Bookshelf

CJ Reviews: The Color Purple by Alice Walker


Title: The Color Purple
Author: Alice Walker
Publication Date: 1982
Format: Paperback
Rating: 4 stars

The Color Purple is the story of two sisters–one a missionary to Africa and the other a child wife living in the South–who 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. (Goodreads)

This probably won’t be a long review, as there isn’t much that I can say about The Color Purple that hasn’t already been said or discussed in the decades since it’s original publication.

The Color Purple is can be a pretty quick read, but it has a lot to say even if it may not immediately strike you as being a deep novel. The format of the novel – written in the form of letters – makes it quicker to read through the book, and more interesting than it might have been otherwise.

This novel was selected as the second book to be read for Emma Watson’s book club over on Goodreads, and I’m so glad it was. I know it’s a classic but I never had the opportunity or motivation to read it sooner, and I’m sorry I didn’t. Even though this novel does deal with race, what struck me most about it was the women and the relationships between them. Even though most of the women in this novel had reason to hate one or more of the other women, they were all extremely supportive of one another. They stood up for each other and were there for each other when needed. I feel like too often women spend a significant portion of time tearing each other down and trying to one-up each other and not nearly enough time forming the kind of community that is presented in this novel.

The lessons about love, relationships, strength, and feminity in this novel are universal and inspirational. I’m sorry it took so long for me to discover this novel, but I’m really glad I finally took the time to read it.

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