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Loveby Toni Morrison
"Some people, who probably haven't read Morrison in the first place, have a tendency to dismiss her as a propagandist, a victimologist, a knee-jerk uplifter of the race. As a Nobel laureate and the most celebrated black writer in history, she makes a large and satisfying target. But while Love is indeed, in some large sense, a novel about the damaging legacy of slavery and racism, there is nothing simplistic anywhere in it. In no way does Morrison provide ideological excuses for Bill Cosey or the warring women around him, or apologize for the rape and murder, the petty torment and the money-grubbing and the malicious arson fires and the corruption that have poisoned the Cosey resort and the Cosey world." Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com (read the entire Salon review)
"At times, Love reads like notes for a novel ? 'Christine accepted his invitation to dinner. By dessert they had plans . . . . As couplehood goes, it had its moments. As marriage goes, it was ridiculous' ? at other times like notes for a by now predictable lecture....The reader of a disassembled story reasonably expects to come across something solid, around which it coheres. What is there in Love? Homilies galore, of both the pragmatic and metaphorical kind..." James Campbell, Times Literary Supplement (read the entire TLS review)
Synopses & Reviews
May, Christine, Heed, Junior, Vida-even L: all women obsessed with Bill Cosey. The wealthy owner of the famous Coseys Hotel and Resort, he shapes their yearnings for father, husband, lover, guardian, and friend, yearnings that dominate the lives of these women long after his death. Yet while he is either the void in, or the center of, their stories, he himself is driven by secret forces-a troubled past and a spellbinding woman named Celestial.
This audacious exploration into the nature of love-its appetite, its sublime possession, its dread-is rich in characters, striking scenes, and a profound understanding of how alive the past can be.
A major addition to the canon of one of the worlds literary masters.
"[A]n elegantly shaped epic...a rich symbolic mystery that grows steadily more eloquent and disturbing as its meanings clarify and grip the reader. One of Morrison's finest, and a heartening return to Nobel-worthy form." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"[A] dense, dark star of a novel, seemingly eccentric, secretly shapely, with Faulknerian passions and Nabokovian layers of lies and misdirection, the 19th- century device of a disputed will and some 20th-century social history — and with Morrison...writing at the top of her game." Newsweek
"[H]aunting, slender....Morrison has crafted a gorgeous, stately novel whose mysteries are gradually unearthed..." Publishers Weekly
"Despite the simplicity of its title, Love is a profound novel....[A]s a vivid painter of human emotions, Morrison is without peer, her impressions rendered in an exquisitely metaphoric but comfortably open style." Brad Hooper, Booklist (Starred Review)
"[O]ne of her slighter efforts....[W]hile there are some beautifully observed passages in this book, where the author's distinctive style...takes over, the story as a whole reads like a gothic soap opera..." Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"Love seduces with Toni Morrison's signature lush prose and colorfully complex, textured scenes of human longing, scheming, suffering, and loss." Lisa Shea, Elle
"Majestically written, fitfully beautiful, and fundamentally trivial....In this minor gothic soap opera, Morrison's storytelling gifts haven't failed her, but her material has. (Grade: B)" Jennifer Reese, Entertainment Weekly
"[A] brief, dense and devastating book....There's no end to the bitter, pointless and destructive things the people in Love will do to each other in the name of love....[A] masterly work whose scale is much bigger than it appears to be..." Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com
"[A] vividly narrated exploration of the pleasures, burdens, and distortions of obsessive devotion. Given the book's brevity, the dialog must carry the story convincingly — and, of course, Morrison is a master at this." Library Journal
From the internationally acclaimed Nobel laureate comes a richly conceived novel that illuminates the full spectrum of desire. More than the wealthy owner of the famous Cosey Hotel and Resort, Bill Cosey shapes the yearnings of six women for father, husband, lover, guardian, friend — yearnings that dominate their lives long after his death.
About the Author
Toni Morrison is the Robert F. Goheen Professor of Humanities at Princeton University. She has received the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize. In 1993 she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. She lives in Rockland County, New York, and Princeton, New Jersey.
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