Wednesday, May 6, 2015
God Help the Child by Toni Morrison
Love is in the details.....
Have you every had an experience with a person who paid very close attention to the details?
Someone who brings Aspirins for you when you go out just in case you get a headache. Or, someone who remembers that you are vegetarian and always invites you over when he cooks fish. There is love all over the details.
Toni writes with love in the details. I can feel her love for details oozing off of the pages when I read her books. God Bless the Child is no different than Toni’s other novels with close attention paid to the details which reads how love feels: simple yet complex.
Since Sunday, I have read God Bless the Child two times. I read it the first time for the enjoyment of the story, and I read it the second time to play close attention to the details.
This novel is written from the first person point of view mixed with some third person point of view. The first person point of view allowed me to hear from each character personally, and the third person point of view allowed me to gain a little more perspective. Lots of details were given to character development, and the character development drove the plot.
In the novel there is:
Sweetness: The mother of Bride who withheld love from her child because of her dark skin. “Here color is a cross that she will always carry. But it’s not my fault. It’s not my fault. It’s not my fault. It’s Not."
Bride: The daughter of Sweetness who came out of the womb “Midnight Black, Sudanese Black.” However Bride turns her cross into her glory. “She capitalized on her dark skin, stressing it, glamorizing it.”
Brooklyn: Bride’s best friend who seemed slightly jealous of Bride. She refers to Bride as "Beautiful dumb bitch."
Sofia: A woman who was locked up for fifteen years for child molestation. Once freed from jail, she reminded herself that “freedom is never free. You have to fight for it. Work for it and make sure you are able to handle it.”
Steve and Evelyn: A White Hippie couple who took good care of Bride when she needed it. “Here she was among people living the barest life, putting themselves out for her without hesitation, asking nothing return.”
Rain: The daughter of Steve and Evelyn who fell in love with Bride. “I miss my black lady.”
Booker: He was in love with Bride. “Bride was knock-out beautiful, easy, had something to do everyday and didn’t need his presence every minute. Her self-love was consistent with her cosmetic company milieu and mirrored his obsession with her.”
Queen: She was Booker’s aunt who “comforted him, strengthened him and validated the unfairness of the censure he was feeling from his family."
Now, you may be wondering how did Toni fully develop these characters and discuss child molestation, skin color, life and its up and downs, the horrors of prison, love, family, college, with a hint of mysticism and so much more in only one hundred thirty something pages?
Well, My People, she did it by paying very close attention to the details......
There is love in the details.
Read this novel over and over again!
Long Live THE TONI MORRISON.
I hate to let this book go, but I must.
Next, I’ll be reading The Dragon Can’t Dance by Earl Lovelace, a very intriguing man whom I met at the Bocas Lit Fest... Just wait until you read about my encounter with him.
This is the day.......