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Beloved by Toni Morrison
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Beloved (original 1987; edition 1999)

by Toni Morrison

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
14,890257132 (3.88)2 / 820
Member:everde01
Title:Beloved
Authors:Toni Morrison
Info:Editions 10/18 (1999), Edition: [Nouv. éd.], Poche, 379 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:fantôme, esclavage, migration, Etats-Unis

Work details

Beloved by Toni Morrison (1987)

Recently added bycastrov33, biblio99, LydiaMathis, baryebluth, jassyed, ErinLibsack, private library, zigzagoon, mimikyu, whittad28
Legacy LibrariesThomas C. Dent
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    cammykitty: An often overlooked classic.
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  6. 21
    Mojo: Conjure Stories by Nalo Hopkinson (cammykitty)
    cammykitty: This collection of short stories is nowhere near as dark as Beloved, but it's worth following these tales to the crossroads.
  7. 10
    A Killing in This Town: A Novel by Olympia Vernon (hyacinthony)
    hyacinthony: I was reminded by Morrison's poetic narrative voice at the end of part 2 of Vernon's narrative style. Both books convey a powerful and mysterious spiritual force embedded in the violence of post-slavery african american conditions.
  8. 11
    Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman by Ernest J. Gaines (karmiel)
    karmiel: Both books include a strong woman who attempts to build her life as a free woman after escaping/exiting slavery.
  9. 11
    Philida by André Brink (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: The true meaning of freedom, the price of freedom, cruel things people do in the name of love and cruel acts performed without love are the focus of these books.
  10. 00
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    Sap Rising by Christine Lincoln (edwinbcn)
1980s (5)
Ghosts (118)
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English (243)  French (4)  Spanish (3)  Swedish (2)  Dutch (2)  Italian (2)  Hebrew (1)  All languages (257)
Showing 1-5 of 243 (next | show all)
Going into this, I knew nothing about this book apart from a friend who couldn't get through it, a coworker who recommended it, and its brief mention in a season one episode of QaF. I read this because it was a classic I hadn't read before, and I'm glad I did. The subject matter was dark and disturbing, but the prose was all kinds of gorgeous. The fact that Toni Morrison reads the audio book made it all the more beautiful. The rhythm and power behind the words was impossible to escape.

This is the store of Sethe, a former slave and a mother. The ghost of her young daughter who died years ago haunts her and her house as a lingering presence. But then she actually physically shows up one day. This is the story of Sethe's past, present, and future, told in bits and pieces, out of order and sometimes without narrative, only emotion and feeling. Sometimes it's hard to believe what's happening. Sometimes it's hard to watch what's happening. But you can't help feeling for the characters-- Dever, Paul D, Baby Suggs, Sethe, and of course Beloved. They all deserve a chance at life, but not all of them get it.

I was pulled this way and that emotionally why reading. It was a pleasure to listen to the beautiful prose, but that was juxtiposed against some horrible images--desperation of humanity, heartsickness, unconditional love, uncontrollable fear, and unshakable regert. The sort of all-encompassing regret that WOULD haunt and destroy. I admit there were some times I wanted to pause the audio and just contemplate the words, try to figure out all of what they meant. There are some lines in there that could be analyzed endlessly.

I can't say I loved the book, but I definitely embraced it, learned from it, felt from it. I did enjoy the language. And I am extremely glad I finally read it. ( )
  katekintail | Jun 26, 2016 |
It is well written, but not well crafted. I was disappointed that I didn't like it better, but I find Alice Hoffman's portrayals of post-slavery South, and historical oral accounts offering a much better picture of conditions for those who lived through slavery. There are so many images, so many words, and the book could have done a much better job of saying what it wanted to say if Morrison had divided it into its characters' own chapters. The focus could have become focused then, perhaps. ( )
  threadnsong | Jun 18, 2016 |
A powerful book which feels like a lived experience. ( )
  Writermala | Jun 16, 2016 |
Powerful. Shocking. Weird.
  JulsLane | Jun 15, 2016 |
I am listening to this novel. I couldn't get through it the first time around, but I can tell that this time is going to be different. It is read by the author herself, and I can now see why critics rave. The tone and telling are so expressive. And now I have lived through some great losses, I can tell that the author has also truly lived through the death of close loved ones, and I find myself agreeing with what she is saying. The themes of family love, anger, and the ties that bind are gripping. Throw the whole issue of slavery in there and - no wonder it's a book that many simply can't deal with. ( )
  sydsavvy | Apr 8, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 243 (next | show all)
"Beloved" is Toni Morrison's fifth novel, and another triumph. Indeed, Ms. Morrison's versatility and technical and emotional range appear to know no bounds. If there were any doubts about her stature as a pre-eminent American novelist, of her own or any other generation, ''Beloved'' will put them to rest.
 
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» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Toni Morrisonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dekker, BesselTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vink, NettieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Beloved ( [1998]IMDb)
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Epigraph
I will call them my people, which were not my people; and her beloved, which was not beloved. Romans 9:25
Dedication
Sixty Million
and more
First words
124 was spiteful.
Quotations
I will never run from another thing on this earth.
Freeing yourself was one thing; claiming ownership of that freed self was another.
And though she and others lived through and got over it, she could never let it happen to her own. The best things she was, was her children.
Being alive was the hard part.
Nobody stopped playing checkers just because the pieces included her children.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish between this complete 1987 novel and any abridgement of the original Work. Thank you.
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Information from the Swedish Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.

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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0452264464, Paperback)

Toni Morrison gently reads her own Pulitzer Prize-winning work in the unabridged version of this riveting tale of ex-slave Sethe and the beloved ghost that haunts her. While Morrison makes occasional odd pauses in her reading, what is lost in smoothness is more than made up for in quiet intensity as the author reads words obviously deeply felt. Her intimate knowledge of the characters and their motivations lends this reading an authority that helps the listener sort out the breaks in time and dialogue in this complex story of a woman coming to terms with her enslaved past and the loss of her husband and baby daughter. (Running time: 12 hours, eight cassettes) --Kimberly Heinrichs

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:50 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

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. After the Civil War ends, Sethe longingly recalls the two-year-old daughter whom she killed when threatened with recapture after escaping from slavery 18 years before.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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