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GROUP READS > The Color Purple Discussion

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message 1: by Dlmrose (new)

Dlmrose | 17400 comments Mod
This is the discussion thread for the Winter 2011 Group Read The Color Purple by Alice Walker. Please post your comments here. This thread is not restricted to those choosing this book for task 20.10, feel free to join in the discussion. Warning- spoilers ahead!


message 2: by Jessica (new)

Jessica (sureshot26) | 771 comments If you're considering this book for 20.10 and have a Kindle, Amazon reduced this book to $2.99 for today (11/28) only as part of their Cyber Monday sale.


message 3: by Connie (new)

Connie G (connie_g) | 371 comments The Color Purple is the story of two black sisters--Nettie, a missionary in Africa, and Celie, her older sister in Georgia who was married off to an abusive man by the time she was fourteen. It was written in epistolary form with a series of letters from Celie to God, and then as letters from Nettie and Celie to each other.

It was a wonderful book with many story layers and themes. The book has a colorful collection of characters that evolve, search for love, learn to use their creativity and talents, and mature emotionally as they age. It's also a well-written story of blacks and whites in the first half of the 20th Century. In addition, it shows the relationship between missionaries and the people they try to change in Third World countries.

By the end of the story, there was more respect and understanding between the black men and black women. Unfortunately, the relationships between the races still had a long way to go.


message 4: by Angie (new)

Angie (pinkindle) | 597 comments I really enjoyed this one! Even though it started out pretty depressing, I loved the ending.


message 5: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 896 comments I loved the ending of this one as well. But, the thing that struck me the most was the fact that I have seen the movie The Color Purple many times, but this book was so much better. I like I got more invested in the characters.

Also, the love story between Celie and Shug was much more apparent in the book. I am surprised since the book was written in the 80's that it was so prevalent.


message 6: by Bea (new)

Bea | 3824 comments Sassafrass wrote: "I loved the ending of this one as well. But, the thing that struck me the most was the fact that I have seen the movie The Color Purple many times, but this book was so much better. I like I got m..."


Isn't that love story the reason the book was banned so frequently?


message 7: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 896 comments Bea wrote: "sn't that love story the reason the book was banned so frequently? "


I'm sure.


message 8: by JC (new)

JC (jmnc) | 640 comments Just finished this last night - gave it 3 stars. I'm sure I'll be in the minority, but I think I like the movie better than the book. Maybe that's because I've seen the movie so many times. There was much more detail about Celie and Shug's relationship in the book, though, which I enjoyed.


message 9: by Debsp (new)

Debsp This was a great book. Although the book includes the story of both sisters lives, it is Celie whom I felt the most for in this book. She overcame so much in her life that was bad. We really see a story of growth, self awareness and strength. I think by the end she is really her own person.


message 10: by Jennifer W (new)

Jennifer W | 468 comments I finished this book last night and overall enjoyed it. I haven't ever seen the movie and really didn't know what the book was about. I was surprised that it was written as letters, but it worked for me. (view spoiler)


message 11: by kiki (new)

kiki (keekers) | 821 comments this is a book that i re-read every couple of years. i think this was my 6th time reading it? not sure. each time i read it i find something new that i hadn't noticed before, and each reading gives me a deeper appreciation of the characters and the story. i also watch the movie every year and bawl like a baby. somehow the book doesn't make me cry, but the movie does. probably my all time favorite book -- i was so excited that it was one of the group reads!


message 12: by April (new)

April I will be writing later when I read the book but I look forward to reading this book more now that I read the comments than before. I have heard some of the music from the Broadway musical and only read the wiki outline of the story. If you have never heard the music from the musical I suggest you do. Some really beautiful songs.


message 13: by Stacey (new)

Stacey (stacita) | 241 comments Finished this one up over Christmas and I'm only getting to post now, so my memory's not completely fresh. But I loved it, I don't know why I've never read it before!


message 14: by LDB (new)

LDB | 110 comments For whatever reason, I did not have high expectations of this book when I went into it. I had heard good things about it but for whatever reason was not mentally excited to read it. But, I am definitely glad I did! I loved how three-dimensional the characters were and how it subtly brought up issues such as racism, gender orientation, battle of the genders, etc. I thought the juxtaposition of blacks in the US against blacks in Africa was particularly interesting. While I know it won't live up to the book, I am now interested in seeing the movie to see how they portrayed it all. Somehow, and not on purpose, I have eluded both book and movie for all these years!


message 15: by kiki (new)

kiki (keekers) | 821 comments LDB wrote: "For whatever reason, I did not have high expectations of this book when I went into it. I had heard good things about it but for whatever reason was not mentally excited to read it. But, I am defin..."

the movie is quite different from the book, but just as amazing! imho, of course! :) hope you enjoy it!


message 16: by Jean (new)

Jean | 123 comments I didn't expect this book to paint a pretty picture, but I didn't know how ugly ugly can be. This was a real eye opener and discussed things that needed to be said, but it was not an enjoyable read. The second half was much better as the characters began to confront their past.


message 17: by April (new)

April Celie was really allowed to mature and grow into her own person. That was really well developed and well written. I didn't feel that Nettie was as well developed but you still feel Celie's love for her sister and get involved with Nettie's journey too.

I want to see the movie now because I can't imagine what part Oprah plays.


message 18: by Jessica (new)

Jessica (sureshot26) | 771 comments I really enjoyed this one, much more than I thought I would. Oftentimes "important" books get so bogged down in big themes that the author forgets to tell a good story, but that certainly didn't happen here. My favorite takeaway quote was Celie's comment to Mr. about Shug: "She know how to love somebody back." Sounds like a good philosophy of life to me!


message 19: by Butterflycager (new)

Butterflycager | 319 comments When I first started reading this book, I was a little put-off by the language - both by the way it was written in dialect, and by some of the graphic expressions that were used. But after a few pages, I got so absorbed in Celie's story that I was able to let go of that and just read - I had to know what happened to her and her family. I found myself getting angry while reading this book - there were times when I wanted to take some of the characters and shake them until their teeth rattled - so it was not a comfortable read for me. In general, I tend to avoid books that have family abuse as a theme. But I'm glad I finally read this one.


message 20: by Sam (new)

Sam | 175 comments I started & finished this today in one sitting. It has been on my tbr list for a long time & was particularly interested in reading it as it has previously been a "banned" book in some places.
It did take a little while to get into because of the language in terms of the dialect & the way it is written but once I got used to it I just flew through it. I loved seeing how Celie grew as a person and how her relationships with the other characters developed.
I'm glad this was a group read as it finally made me read it & I am glad that I did.


message 21: by Stacy (new)

Stacy (stacyct) | 116 comments Like everyone else, I really enjoyed and focused on the great relationships between the characters. Then I read a piece by the author who said the theme of the book was the search for god. Kind of puts a different spin on things. Thoughts?


message 22: by Sue (new)

Sue (suetinge) | 1488 comments I really enjoyed this and thought the interactions between the characters were great. My heart broke for Celie so many times, I can't believe how strong she was.


message 23: by Lorna (new)

Lorna | 486 comments What I liked most about the book was the depth of the female characters and the eloquent use of the black English vernacular. Although it was a disturbing story, the way it was written pulls you into the story and you just want to keep reading. I didn't like the descriptions of the sexual situations. I did like the ending and felt like Celie had found God and happiness.


message 24: by Jean (new)

Jean | 123 comments Lorna wrote: "What I liked most about the book was the depth of the female characters and the eloquent use of the black English vernacular. Although it was a disturbing story, the way it was written pulls you i..."

Great comments, Lorna!


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Books mentioned in this topic

The Color Purple (other topics)
The Color Purple (other topics)

Authors mentioned in this topic

Alice Walker (other topics)