Saturday, June 27, 2009

Paradise--Toni Morrison

Genre: Fiction
Year Published: 1997
Rating: 4/5
Pages: 352

"They shoot the white girl first."

I have yet to be disappointed in Toni Morrison. This novel centers around a town founded by freed slaves who were rejected in other towns, immersed in its own history and fully self-sufficient. But there is an underlying current of unease. The town has split into two factions of founder's descendants, and debates are raging. The children are different, moved by the civil rights movement and other signs of the times. Outside of town is an old convent, which has somehow become a boarding house for women hurt, lost, or rejected. They live together trying to create their own eden, a place where they can be who they are and heal. But the tension in the town only grows when faced with these brazen, strange women, and in the end misunderstanding erupts into horrible violence.

I can't say I truly understand what happens in the end. Like other Morrison books I've read, reality verges into something else, something religious and other-worldly, and I'm still mulling it over in my mind. Somehow this doesn't detract from the book, but adds to the overall feel.

Book-a-week #: 21
Date Read: 4/3/09
Challenge/s: TBR (Alt)

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