Books by Alice Walker

ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 2, 2013

"Walker's "recipe[s] for difficult times" provide a heartfelt response to a new generation's yearning for public service."
In a new collection, Walker (The Chicken Chronicles, 2012, etc.) once again shows herself to be a deep and compassionate participant in global humanitarian efforts. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 3, 2011

"Life-affirmative and eccentrically inspirational."
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of imparts life lessons and sage wisdom through the care and feeding of a delightful flock of chickens. Read full book review >
WHY WAR IS NEVER A GOOD IDEA by Alice Walker
FICTION
Released: Sept. 1, 2007

How do you answer the question implied in this title? Read full book review >

THERE IS A FLOWER AT THE TIP OF MY NOSE by Alice Walker
POETRY
Released: May 1, 2006

It is seldom that word and image braid themselves together in such gorgeous perfection. Read full book review >

NOW IS THE TIME TO OPEN YOUR HEART by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2004

"An overwrought pastiche of muddled thinking."
An aging writer relates the lessons she's learned from life—an unconvincing mix of the politically correct and fabulous—while navigating the Colorado and Amazon rivers. Read full book review >
LANGSTON HUGHES by Alice Walker
BIOGRAPHY
Released: Jan. 1, 2002

The text of a 1974 picture-book biography of the poet Langston Hughes is reprinted, with new illustrations. Read full book review >

THE WAY FORWARD IS WITH A BROKEN HEART by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 9, 2000

"Many voices are heard here, and whether they preach or praise, coo or condemn, they all come from one heart."
Using the accretion method that has become her trademark, Walker (By the Light of My Father's Smile, 1998, etc.) here offers a many-voiced, often lyrical story—but in discrete, oddly shaped lumps—of her first marriage and subsequent awakenings over the course of a lifetime of relationships. Read full book review >
BY THE LIGHT OF MY FATHER'S SMILE by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

Another idiosyncratic novel from Walker (Possessing the Secret of Joy, 1992, etc.), moving and puzzling by turns. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 1, 1997

"One of these pieces contains a lengthy excerpt from her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, The Color Purple, which only serves to reinforce our disappointment in her nonfiction writing."
Like Walker's past collections, this one makes a stab at some of the themes of her fiction—nonpatriarchal religion, the true relationship of humans to the earth, racism, the oppression of women, and the interconnectedness of all of the above. Read full book review >
THE SAME RIVER TWICE by Alice Walker
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: Jan. 1, 1996

Like the quilt her character Celie makes in the bestselling novel The Color Purple, Walker has created a patchwork verbal memento of the filming of her novel that will delight fans and movie buffs but is too self-absorbed to be of general interest. Read full book review >

POSSESSING THE SECRET OF JOY by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: June 30, 1992

"Female circumcision is a terrible travesty, but neither it nor Walker's talent is well served by this overwrought novel."
Here and there tantalizing remnants of the writing that made The Color Purple such a critical success, but for the most part Walker's latest is held hostage to an agenda—the eradication of female circumcision in Africa and the Middle East—a cause to which she will be contributing a portion of the royalties. Read full book review >
FINDING THE GREEN STONE by Alice Walker
FICTION
Released: Oct. 1, 1991

The Pulizer Prize-winning novelist tells an allegorical tale with a contemporary setting: Like everyone in their friendly rural neighborhood, Katie and her brother Johnny each possess an iridescent green stone, carried in a pocket or used for games. Read full book review >

THE TEMPLE OF MY FAMILIAR by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 1, 1989

"Others will enjoy its quirky ebb and flow, but bemoan its smugness and unfortunate tendency to turn characters into mouthpieces."
Walker follows the vast critical and popular success of The Color Purple (1982) with a sprawling mixture of feminism and spirituality centered on six characters searching for their identities and roots. Read full book review >
LIVING BY THE WORD by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 31, 1988

"At best, then, a companion piece to Walker's fiction, especially when read selectively with an eye towards the techniques and ideas driving her narratives."
This surprisingly uneven collection of essays, addresses, journal entries, and casual writings covers the period from 1973 through 1987, and stands in sharp contrast to the high watermark of the author's The Color Purple (1982). Read full book review >
TO HELL WITH DYING by Alice Walker
FICTION
Released: April 1, 1988

"A Fine story of deep feeling."
In a short story produced as a picture book, a well-known novelist (The Color Purple) depicts the loving relationship between Mr. Sweet, "a diabetic and an alcoholic and a guitar player," and the girl who narrates the story. Read full book review >
IN SEARCH OF OUR MOTHERS' GARDENS by Alice Walker
SOCIAL SCIENCES
Released: Oct. 10, 1983

"Thoughtful, intelligent, resonant musings."
For poet and novelist Walker (The Color Purple), racism is like the "creeping kudzu vine that swallows whole forests and abandoned houses; if you don't keep pulling up the roots it will grow back faster than you can destroy it." Read full book review >
THE COLOR PURPLE by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: June 28, 1982

"A lovely, painful book: Walker's finest work yet."
Walker (In Love and Trouble, Meridian) has set herself the task of an epistolary novel—and she scores strongly with it. Read full book review >
YOU CAN'T KEEP A GOOD WOMAN DOWN by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 29, 1981

A thin, often didactic, largely disappointing collection of stories from an enormously gifted author of short fiction (In Love & Trouble) and novels—whose storytelling powers seem wasted on the generally simple-minded material here. Read full book review >
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 1, 1979

"Indeed it is—and fittingly presented at last."
Zora Neale Hurston, who left her Florida home at 14 to become a maid, became instead part of the Harlem Renaissance and one of America's most prolific black women writers during her 30-year career as novelist, journalist, and folklorist (Franz Boas-trained). Read full book review >
MERIDIAN by Andre Bernard
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 17, 1976

"Like the resolution (to which they are tangential), they seem mandated by history rather than invoked by the story."
The Third Life of Grange Copeland (1970) cuts a swathe through southern black life, 19201965, as straight and distinct as a furrow. Read full book review >
IN LOVE & TROUBLE by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 12, 1973

"But the real stuff is nice as ever."
A collection of stories about black women in love and trouble which amounts to the same thing. Read full book review >
REVOLUTIONARY PETUNIAS by Alice Walker
Released: Jan. 24, 1972

"Brightly sensate, true to a definite, attractive mind."
Like Nikki Giovanni in her gentler moods, Alice Walker can evoke a whole realm of experience with the soft black inflections of a simple statement. Read full book review >
THE THIRD LIFE OF GRANGE COPELAND by Andre Bernard
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 6, 1970

"The pressures and responses of such beleaguered families are traced step by grim step, with stern sympathy and a clean, functional style."
This is a harrowingly detailed family saga spanning three generations of Copelands, black Georgia sharecroppers. Read full book review >

Walker follows the vast critical and popular success of The Color Purple (1982) with a sprawling mixture of feminism and spirituality centered on six characters searching for their identities and roots. Read full book review >