Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

The Color Purple (original 1982; edition 2006)

by Alice Walker

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
11,657183229 (4.11)322
Title:The Color Purple
Authors:Alice Walker
Info:Mariner Books (2006), Edition: 1, Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Already Read, Your library
Tags:Already Read

Work details

The Color Purple by Alice Walker (1982)


Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 322 mentions

English (175)  Swedish (2)  Vietnamese (1)  Hungarian (1)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (182)
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
For those who haven't read the book...There may be a spoiler or two...

When it came out in the 1980's, like most others, I watched it and fell in love with the movie.

It wasn't until last year that I picked up this book and attempted to read it. Again, this was a book I wasn't quite sure how I'd feel about it. It took me a bit to get into it because the beginning of the movie was always hard for me to deal with. But once I got past that part, and got further into the story, I really began to love it. And of course, I loved it more than the movie.

Of course, there were details in the book that wasn't in the movie. And it answered some questions I had...Like, what happened to the man Shug Avery married.

And what type of relationship Shug and Cellie actually had. And Cellies True feelings for her.

And I found out that Cellie & Mister actually became friends in the book. {Which they didn't show in the movie}.

I fell so in love with this book I didn't want it to end. I found myself not really even wanting to watch the movie any more because of it...lol...

But I still do love the movie....

Anyone who loved the movie, and maybe even love Alice Walker books but haven't read this one...It's very much worth reading. Or even if you don't like her books and haven't read this one...Its worth reading. I don't like Alice Walkers other books {I've tried reading them and couldn't get into them} but this one will always be on my top 10 favorite books I believe. ( )
  MsBridgetReads | Jul 8, 2014 |
This is the story of two black sisters who grow up in the south in the first half of the 20th century. They escape their abusive father, Celie through being given away in marriage as a very young girl to an abusive husband, and Nettie meets a black family that takes her along on a mission trip to Africa. This book is told through letters. Celie's are to God in journal form and later to Nettie, and Nettie writes to Celie of her experience in Africa.

Walker explores many topics in this book - the challenges of being poor and black in the south, relationships between husband and wife, the justice system for blacks, love, and religion. She also contrasts the African experience with the African-American experience through Nettie's letters.

Overall, I found this a very moving and well-done book. There were sections that I found a bit predictable , but I enjoyed watching Celie and Nettie grow out of their difficult beginnings to be whole, interesting people. ( )
  japaul22 | Jul 8, 2014 |
The Color Purple really made me think. At times I felt so connected to Cecile that I thought I would cry, her story was so heartbreaking. I would definitely recommend this book, especially to those who enjoy a good emotional roller coaster. ( )
  ChickensAreBrave | Jul 6, 2014 |
The Color Purple really made me think. At times I felt so connected to Cecile that I thought I would cry, her story was so heartbreaking. I would definitely recommend this book, especially to those who enjoy a good emotional roller coaster. ( )
  ChickensAreBrave | Jul 1, 2014 |
Original post at Book Rhapsody.



I am the only reader in our family. I might sound a little condescending, but it really is true. I am the only person in the most recent generation of our family tree who would spend a lot on books. A few of my cousins show some interest in reading, but they do not read as voraciously as I do.

So it really is rewarding when I get my cousins to read by simply letting them check out my books. One cousin read a book I left on the dresser. Never mind that it was a Danielle Steel novel. Another cousin periodically checks out my books. I don’t think she has ever borrowed one of my books, but I influenced her big time to get a copy of Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go.

And there’s my sister. The first book that she read from my pile was The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks. It’s something that I really didn’t intend to buy, but hey, at least someone read it. And then she jumped to Alice Walker’s The Color Purple. I saw her crying during one of her reading sessions. It got her. I smiled at the thought, because that book also got me.

The Rhapsody

It’s not easy to forget this book because of the epistolary style. Dear God, Dear God. Yes, the letters are addressed to God. It’s more of a journal than a letter. Then somewhere on the middle part, a new recipient is included. Dear Nettie, Dear Nettie. Oh, she’s the sister of the letter sender.

And who is this letter sender? She is Celie. She is black, she is abused, she is struggling, she is lonely. I don’t think she really has anyone to share her life with. Hence, the letters. The unanswered letters.

And would it really change anything if you share someone a life devoid of any meaning?

But life is never devoid of any meaning. There has to be something somewhere. One has to search deeper. One must get in touch with his inner self. One must discover it in order to make sense of everything.

This book is both simple and complex. It’s simple because the writing is not heavy. It’s complex because of the layers of themes integrated. The themes of racism, self-discovery, and the strength of the human spirit are seamlessly weaved into one small book. It has a generally sad mood, but at the end, there’s the happy ending. There’s the reunion of the sisters. There’s Celie’s redemption from a life bound in chains, her letters finally being answered. Indeed, there’s always hope. I always say that, and I don’t know if people are getting tired of hearing me say that. But I can’t help it.

Final Notes

I like the color purple, both the book and the color. I am actually wearing striped purple shoes now. I should have worn my purple shirt, but I didn’t realize this morning that this book is scheduled today.

Purple is a fun and delicious color. It is also the color of spirituality. I don’t know who decided that or where it came from, but reading this book can strengthen that designation for the color. It’s because it made me feel that there is a higher force watching over us. I am not a religious person, but I do sometimes think about such stuff. Besides, I think my philosophies in life are inherently spiritual.

People sometimes confuse spirituality with religion. It may have something to do with it, but it is something larger and more universal than religion alone. I don’t remember the mention of any specific religion in the book. The letters were not addressed to the Catholic God, the Moslem God, or Some Religion’s God. It’s just plain God.

It’s our God. Everyone’s God. ( )
  angusmiranda | Jun 10, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
Walker accomplishes a rare thing: She makes an epistolary novel work without veering into preciousness. Rather, Celie's full-bodied voice emerges, a moody and honest voice, in an inherently intimate literary form.
Without doubt, Alice Walker's latest novel is her most impressive. No mean accomplishment, since her previous books - which, in addition to several collections of poetry and two collections of short stories, include two novels ("The Third Life of Grange Copeland" and "Medridian") - have elicited almost unanimous praise for Miss Walker as a lavishly gifted writer

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Walker, Aliceprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dam, Irma vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Juva, KerstiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
"Show me how to do like you. Show how to do it." -Stevie Wonder
To the Spirit:
Without whose assistance
Neither this book
Nor I
Would have been
First words
You better not never tell nobody but God. It'd kill your mammy.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Tells the story of two African-American sisters: Nettie, a missionary in Africa, and Celie, a child-wife living in the south, in the medium of their letters to each other and in Celie's case, the desperate letters she begins, "Dear God."
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0671727796, Mass Market Paperback)

Winner of the National Book Award as well as the Pulitzer Prize, "The Color Purple" established Alice Walker as a major voice in modern fiction. Her unforgettable portrait of Celie and her friends, family, and lovers is rich with passion, pain, inspiration, and an indomitable love of life. Beautifully imagined and deeply compassionate, "The Color Purple" is a classic of American literature.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:01:45 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Set in the deep American South, The color purple is the story of Celie, a young black girl born into extreme poverty and segregation. Raped repeatedly by the man she calls 'father', she is then given by him to a violent man. Later she meets Shug Avery, a glamorous singer, who gives her the courage to take charge of her life.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 12 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
469 avail.
349 wanted
4 pay5 pay

Popular covers


Average: (4.11)
0.5 4
1 34
1.5 9
2 92
2.5 32
3 463
3.5 123
4 1137
4.5 148
5 1159


Three editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 92,125,342 books! | Top bar: Always visible