Memphis Reads – The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Staff Book Reviews

Readers’ Advisory Genre Spotlight

Syma reviews THE COLOR PURPLE by Alice Walker (Harcourt,1982)

Celie and her sister, Nellie, were raised by their mother and the man they discovered later to be their stepfather in rural Georgia.

Even though younger, prettier Nellie was the sister “Mister” desired, she was not allowed to marry him. Instead, Celie was expected to marry “Mister.”

This, of course, caused a separation between the sisters. While Celie was married to Mister, she endured rape, abuse, and slavery while raising his four children from his previous marriage. To make matters worse, Mister disrespected Celie and their marriage even more by allowing his true love, Suge Avery, to move into his house. Even though Mister was over heels in love with Suge, she and Celie began their own secret, sexual relationship.

While Suge and Celie’s love and understanding for one another grew, their relationship helped both gain independence away from Mister. Sensing this, Mister wanted to redeem himself so he contacted the Department of Immigration. Through this rare act of kindness, Celie and Nellie were finally reunited.

Knowing how much adversity the sisters had to endure, this novel is a true tear jerker.

Syma C., Staff