Wednesday, August 4, 2010
BELOVED BY TONI MORRISON
Definitely not a cosy read, yet I found it compelling. She leaps right into the guts of the story and for the first 40 odd pages it was hard going, then I couldn't put it down.
Sethe, along with her three children are finally free. She has escaped, without her husband, to the safety of her mother-in-law's home. After a few idyllic weeks, the white people come for her. In an horrific moment, Sethe would rather her children die than become slaves and she kills her child - Beloved.
With hauntingly beautiful prose Toni Morrison tells the story of Sethe and her family, including her daughter Beloved - who returns to claim her retribution.
It's a story that confronts you with the horror of slavery and I was left with many powerful images: of mothers who lose the ability to love because their babies belong to their masters, of white men who have become 'filled with the same jungle' that they fear in their slaves, and the human spirit which can conquer all with love.