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Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison

Song of Solomon (1978)

by Toni Morrison

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
I hardly know where to begin discussing this book. I'm ready to read it again, so my spirit can roll around in it, root even deeper into it's truth.

In "Auguries of Innocence" Blake tells us, To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour

In [b:Song of Solomon|11334|Song of Solomon|Toni Morrison|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1451448230s/11334.jpg|3215642], [a:Toni Morrison|3534|Toni Morrison|https://images.gr-assets.com/authors/1494211316p2/3534.jpg] conjures us into that world. This is not a fantasy - not at all. The people, the places, the feelings are all as real as the itch between your shoulder blades and just as viscerally compelling. ( )
  hopeevey | May 20, 2018 |
Morrison is a great writer and her reputation is well deserved. However, I didn't like Song of Solomon. The main character, Milkman Dead, was not interesting to me. While it is a coming of age story, I didn't find his journey to manhood compelling.

Moreover, there is a hint of the main character's mother sleeping with her dead father. That's bizarre and stopped me from finishing the novel.

( )
  kammbiamh | Mar 25, 2018 |
I don't even know how long it would have taken me to finally read this book had not my resolution to read more of the Bookslut 100 converged with book bingo: A book from the bottom of your to-read pile. Not that I have a pile,but if my list were prioritized, it would be near the bottom. I've owned it for years and years. I once picked it up and read about three pages before I gave up and put it back on the shelf. This book was not going anywhere soon.

Sometimes, I am a bit of an idiot.

Okay, so still, the first few pages were a bit bewildering and I had to kind of slog through them. But not much further in and I was hooked. I mean, it's not like it's a revelation to say that Toni Morrison is a great writer. I think that has pretty much been covered. But it's still a revelation to discover it for oneself.

What is the power of names? What is the value of knowing your heritage? The overlapping of stories and myths and meaning-making. The work of unravelling all of that. I don't know how it can be so foreign and yet so familiar all at the same time. If ever a book made you feel like you'd really walked that mile in a stranger's shoes, this book is on that shelf.

I'm grateful I finally read it. ( )
  greeniezona | Dec 6, 2017 |
of course I loved this novel; mythology, Biblical references, large family saga - all the elements I most appreciate in a novel. I feel like the timeline is often vague or imprecise, but the imprecision is more real, more true to how people really remember than if it had been more precise
  FKarr | Sep 10, 2017 |
Like a lot of great literature or art in general, Toni Morrison’s ‘Song of Solomon’ is not a tidy little story where everything is easily comprehensible, and that may put some readers off. It’s also not a book that depicts African-American characters as downtrodden victims, as successive men in generations of the Macon Dead family succeed at farming, being a doctor, and in real estate. Within its long and winding story it does describe elements of the African-American experience that seem so alive today, 40 years after the book was written: the police using profiling and stopping people just for being black, the justice system not caring about black people getting killed, and the excessive, random, and arbitrary violence of white people towards blacks, and for that alone it’s well worth reading.

Morrison’s style is unique, as she writes at times with magical realism and poetically weaves her way through the story, and at others with dialogue and events that are so direct and real that they sear on the page. You may shudder at the ‘Seven Days’ club’s desire for vengeance, but Morrison does not flinch in describing this. Her writing seems very honest in so many ways: in the banter in her characters’ dialogue, the relationships between men and woman particularly when there is sexual obsession, and in the observations she makes, such as at one point expressing the criticism that there is sometimes a tendency for blacks to excuse themselves from doing better because everything is “The Man’s fault”.

One of the central themes of the book is the hope of transcending difficult conditions, and also to know one’s past, one’s people. Most have lost their real names and sometimes get the ridiculous names out of white hubris, or because “White people name Negroes like race horses”, and indeed, the dedication to the book reads “The fathers may soar, and the children may know their names”. The book is ambitious in its scope and in how the story was told. Maybe too ambitious for an even higher rating from me. Parts of the plot don’t seem plausible, such as Guitar’s actions towards Milkman towards the end, though perhaps they are also symbolic. Regardless, all in all, a good read. ( )
1 vote gbill | Jan 23, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Toni Morrisonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Beek, RonaldTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Verhagen, PietTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The fathers may soar / And the children may know their names
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The North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance agent promised to fly from Mercy to the other side of Lake Superior at three o'clock.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 140003342X, Paperback)

The third novel from one America's most powerful writers turns 20 years old in 1997, but Song of Solomon long ago ascended to the top shelf in the ranks of great literature. This Everyman's Library hardcover edition of the Nobel Prize-winning Morrison's lyrical, powerful, and erudite novel contains a chronology that situates the book in its historical context, and an introduction from author Reynolds Price.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:47 -0400)

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Four generations of black life in America.

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