Search - Beloved

Author: Toni Morrison
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 hideou...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9781400033416
ISBN-10: 1400033411
Publication Date: 6/8/2004
Pages: 352
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.

3.4 stars, based on 162 ratings
Publisher: Vintage
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review
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Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Beloved on + 80 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
Reading Toni Morrison's books is not something for the faint of heart. Her literature requires the reader to work for it, to struggle through sometimes uncomfortable prose or through gut-wrenching scenarios within the larger story. But, at the end, you have earned that have achieved something. And, I've found that people either can't stand her books, or they love her books. There isn't any real middle-ground. I am part of the latter group. And especially for this book. I re-read it every year, and it is still new and gripping and passionate and brilliant every time.
reviewed Beloved on
Helpful Score: 7
I didn't care for this book and I couldn't summon up the desire to even finish reading it. Heavy use of symbolism. Incoherent and unrealistic at times. Perhaps the author did not intend for the book to be realistic but I believe it is important when you are representing an historical time period and the treatment of slaves. Completely turned me off reading anything else by Morrison.
reviewed Beloved on + 19 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
This book recently was rated the best book of American Fiction written in the past 25 years. It is not light reading, and I honestly found some of the parts hard to follow. Not for the squeemish reader either-there are themes of rape and violence that are truthful, yet horrid.
On the other side, it's a provocotive look at life for slaves after the emancipation and the way that grief and pain manifest themselves for one mother.
reviewed Beloved on + 207 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
Not the easiest read. In the beginning, I would have to keep going back to reread the previous page, to try to figure out what the author was trying to say. There's a lot to think about in this book. It was recently named the best American novel of the last 25 years. I'd say it's good, but not *that* good.
reviewed Beloved on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
A complicated and painful book to read. I saw the movie before reading the book and think it might have been better the other way around.

It is a view of slavery that most whitefolk (of which I am one) don't want to remember and surely do not understand the depths of the depravity that the black people suffered at the white hands of our ancestors. I think that it would be a good book for high schoolers to read, even in class for discussion...this is information about an era in our country that people tend to gloss over. This book is not glossy.

A good read but be prepared to do the work of staying with the author and the's a bit of a challenge.
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reviewed Beloved on + 289 more book reviews
Like a good curry, Beloved is a taste of powerful storytelling. Toni Morrison's poetic language immerses the reader in the story of Sethe, a slave who escaped to Cincinnati, Ohio but not free from slavery's haunting effects. The house she shares with her sole remaining child Denver born during the escape is haunted by the ghost of her baby. Things come to a boil when Paul D, a fellow slave and escapee from Sweet Home, and a mysterious young lady named Beloved arrive. Rather than chronological exposition, the characters' experiences in slavery are related through twists and turns of flashbacks, amplified by the prism of what we would now call post-traumatic stress disorder. Based on the true story of Margaret Garner, Toni Morrison's fifth novel was a great choice for Black and Women's History Months from the list of 1001 books you must read before you die.

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