If the only book you've read by Toni Morrison is her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Beloved, you're missing out. Known for her powerfully evocative prose, her grand mystical tales steeped in black history, her haunting (and haunted) characters, Morrison is an author whose body of work demands attention. Her third novel, Song of Solomon — Barack Obama's self-proclaimed favorite book — is a magnificent, epic story following Macon "Milkman" Dead, along with an assortment of characters whose lives touch, and at times endanger, his own. Violence and a palpable fear of injustice pervades the people of this book, set in Michigan in the '30s through the '60s. But moreover, as the many characters emerge in full color for both Milkman and the reader, Song of Solomon is a book of awakenings, and a tale of one man's journey from defiance to action. Recommended By Renee P., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Milkman Dead was born shortly after a neighborhood eccentric hurled himself off a rooftop in a vain attempt at flight. For the rest of his life he, too, will be trying to fly. With this brilliantly imagined novel, Toni Morrison transfigures the coming-of-age story as audaciously as Saul Bellow or Gabriel García Márquez. As she follows Milkman from his rustbelt city to the place of his family's origins, Morrison introduces an entire cast of strivers and seeresses, liars and assassins, the inhabitants of a fully realized black world.
"Morrison is a terrific storyteller....Her writing evokes the joyful richness of life." Newsday
"Toni Morrison is an extraordinarily good writer....One closes the book warmed through by the richness of its sympathy, and by its breathtaking feel for the nature of sexual sorrow." The Village Voice
"Toni Morrison has created a fanciful world here....She has an impeccable sense of emotional detail. She's the most sensible lyrical writer around today." The Philadelphia Inquirer
"A marvelous novel, the most moving I have read in ten years of reviewing." Cleveland Plain Dealer
"A rhapsodic work....Intricate and inventive." The New Yorker
"With an ear as sharp as glass [Morrison] has listened to the music of black talk and uses it as a palette knife to create black lives and to provide some of the best fictional dialogue around today." The Nation
"Morrison moves easily in and out of the lives and thoughts of her characters, luxuriating in the diversity of circumstances and personality...." The New Yorker
About the Author
Toni Morrison is the author of eleven novels, from The Bluest Eye (1970) to God Help the Child (2015). She received the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Pulitzer Prize, and in 1993 she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. She died in 2019.