Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl, prays every day for beauty. Mocked by other children for the dark skin, curly hair, and brown eyes that set her apart, she yearns for normalcy, for the blond hair and blue eyes that she believes will allow her to finally fit in.Yet as her dream grows more fervent, her life slowly starts to disintegrate in the face of adversity and strife. A powerful examination of our obsession with beauty and conformity, Toni Morrison’s virtuosic first novel asks powerful questions about race, class, and gender with the subtlety and grace that have always characterized her writing. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read Staring unflinchingly into the abyss of slavery, this spellbinding novel transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby. Sethe, its protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. And Sethe’s new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved. Filled with bitter poetry and suspense as taut as a rope, Beloved is a towering achievement.
Two girls who grow up to become women. Two friends who become something worse than enemies. In this brilliantly imagined novel, Toni Morrison tells the story of Nel Wright and Sula Peace, who meet as children in the small town of Medallion, Ohio. Their devotion is fierce enough to withstand bullies and the burden of a dreadful secret. It endures even after Nel has grown up to be a pillar of the black community and Sula has become a pariah. But their friendship ends in an unforgivable betrayal—or does it end? Terrifying, comic, ribald and tragic, Sula is a work that overflows with life.
The latest novel from Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison. An angry and self-loathing veteran of the Korean War, Frank Money finds himself back in racist America after enduring trauma on the front lines that left him with more than just physical scars. His home--and himself in it--may no longer be as he remembers it, but Frank is shocked out of his crippling apathy by the need to rescue his medically abused younger sister and take her back to the small Georgia town they come from, which he's hated all his life. As Frank revisits the memories from childhood and the war that leave him questioning his sense of self, he discovers a profound courage he thought he could never possess again. A deeply moving novel about an apparently defeated man finding his manhood--and his home. This eBook edition includes a Reading Group Guide.
Author: Toni Morrison
Release Date: 2004
Genre: African American families
Milkman Dead was born shortly after a neighborhood eccentric hurled himself off a rooftop in a vain attempt at flight. For the rest of his life he, too, will be trying to fly. With this brilliantly imagined novel, Toni Morrison transfigures the coming-of-age story as audaciously as Saul Bellow or Gabriel García Márquez. As she follows Milkman from his rustbelt city to the place of his family's origins, Morrison introduces an entire cast of strivers and seeresses, liars and assassins, the inhabitants of a fully realized black world.
This collection of beautiful, enduring hardcover editions features modern American masterpieces, including works by Nobel Prize and National Book Award winners. With elegant cloth sewn bindings, gold stamped covers, and silk ribbon markers, these classics are an essential for any home library. Titles included: Beloved by Toni Morrison The Border Trilogy by Cormac McCarthy Rabbit Angstrom by John Updike Revolutionary Road; The Easter Parade; Eleven Kinds of Loneliness by Richard Yates We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live by Joan Didion
Author: Louisa S Nye
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: 1999-03-03
Genre: Literary Criticism
The original CliffsNotes study guides offer expert commentary on major themes, plots, characters, literary devices, and historical background. CliffsNotes on The Bluest Eye & Sula covers two of Toni Morrison’s unforgettable novels. The Bluest Eye, Morrison’s first novel, focuses on Pecola Breedlove, a lonely, young black girl living in Ohio in the late 1940s. Through Pecola, Morrison exposes the power and cruelty of white, middle-class American definitions of beauty. Sula, Morrison’s second novel, focuses on a young black girl named Sula, who matures into a strong and determined woman in the face of adversity and the distrust, even hatred, of her by the black community in which she lives. Morrison delves into the strong female relationships and how these bonds nurture and threaten individual identity. This study guide will take you beneath the surface of Morrison’s complex characters to uncover their universal themes. Helpful background information about the author brings these novels into context for even greater understanding. Other features that help you study include Complete character lists A character map that graphically illustrates the relationships among the characters Character analyses of major players Glossary of difficult terms Critical essays Review questions and essay topics Classic literature or modern modern-day treasure — you'll understand it all with expert information and insight from CliffsNotes study guides.
The epitome of a group of women's ideals about love, fatherhood, and friendship, wealthy hotel owner Bill Cosey finds his life compromised by his troubled past and his feelings about a spellbinding woman named Celestial. Reader's Guide available. Reprint. 200,000 first printing.
With an introduction by Rachael KushnerIn the vanishing world of the Old West, two cowboys begin an epic adventure, and their own coming-of-age stories. In All the Pretty Horses, John Grady Cole's search for a future takes him across the Mexican border to a job as a ranch hand and an ill-fated romance. The Crossing is the story of sixteen-year-old Billy Parham who sets off on a perilous journey across the mountains of Mexico, accompanied only by a lone wolf. Eventually the two come together in Cities of the Plain, in a stunning tale of loyalty and love. A true classic of American literature, The Border Trilogy is Cormac McCarthy's award-winning requiem for the American frontier. Beautiful and brutal, filled equally with sorrow and humour, it is a powerful story of two friends growing up in a world where blood and violence are conditions of life.
The Nobel Prize-winning author now gives us a learned, stylish, and immensely persuasive work of literary criticism that promises to change the way we read American literature even as it opens a new chapter in the American dialogue on race. Toni Morrison's brilliant discussions of the "Africanist" presence in the fiction of Poe, Melville, Cather, and Hemingway leads to a dramatic reappraisal of the essential characteristics of our literary tradition. She shows how much the themes of freedom and individualism, manhood and innocence, depended on the existence of a black population that was manifestly unfree--and that came to serve white authors as embodiments of their own fears and desires. Written with the artistic vision that has earned Toni Morrison a pre-eminent place in modern letters, Playing in the Dark will be avidly read by Morrison admirers as well as by students, critics, and scholars of American literature. "By going for the American literary jugular...she places her arguments...at the very heart of contemporary public conversation about what it is to be authentically and originally American. [She] boldly...reimagines and remaps the possibility of America." --Chicago Tribune "Toni Morrison is the closest thing the country has to a national writer." The New York Times Book Review
Spare and unsparing, God Help the Child—the first novel by Toni Morrison to be set in our current moment—weaves a tale about the way the sufferings of childhood can shape, and misshape, the life of the adult. At the center: a young woman who calls herself Bride, whose stunning blue-black skin is only one element of her beauty, her boldness and confidence, her success in life, but which caused her light-skinned mother to deny her even the simplest forms of love. There is Booker, the man Bride loves, and loses to anger. Rain, the mysterious white child with whom she crosses paths. And finally, Bride’s mother herself, Sweetness, who takes a lifetime to come to understand that “what you do to children matters. And they might never forget.” A fierce and provocative novel that adds a new dimension to the matchless oeuvre of Toni Morrison.
Author: Amy Sickels
Publisher: Infobase Publishing
Release Date: 2009-01-01
Genre: African American women in literature
- Comprehensive reading and study guides for some of the world's most important literary masterpieces. - Concise critical excerpts provide a scholarly overview of each work. - The Story Behind the Story details the conditions under which the work was written. - Each book includes a biographical sketch of the author, a descriptive list of characters, an extensive summary and analysis, and an annotated bibliography
In the winter of 1926, when everybody everywhere sees nothing but good things ahead, Joe Trace, middle-aged door-to-door salesman of Cleopatra beauty products, shoots his teenage lover to death. At the funeral, Joe’s wife, Violet, attacks the girl’s corpse. This passionate, profound story of love and obsession brings us back and forth in time, as a narrative is assembled from the emotions, hopes, fears, and deep realities of black urban life.