Treasuring African American Love Novels

By Denise Turney

Classic African American love novels like The Color Purple by Alice Walker, Beloved by Toni Morrison and Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston celebrate love and romance shared between African American couples, while, at the same time, they probe the intricacies, challenges and triumphs of everyday life. Eras the novels are set in enhance the stories, help to make them all engrossing, intriguing. Because historic events are captured on the books’ pages, the stories are often taught in secondary and postsecondary schools.

After all, a classic African American book is more than entertaining; it’s also educational. For example, stories like Richard Wright’s, Native Son, and Ann Petry’s, The Street,  illustrate the lifestyles, culture, economics, politics and family mores dominating local, regional and national landscapes during the periods the stories are set in.

It may be the rich history these and other classic African American books capture that keeps readers returning to libraries, bookstores and e-book readers to purchase the books generation after generation. Characters like Celie, Nettie, Lutie Johnson and Bigger Thomas are complex. As readers turn the pages of these classic novels, they witness these complex characters transform. Some characters, like Celie, go from feeling insignificant, weak and insecure to learning their worth.

These character transformations inspire readers. Challenging circumstances in classic African American books ring true, are believable. Yet, the circumstances are often so hard that they are painful to revisit. One can only imagine how difficult it may have been for the authors to put the stories on paper, cementing the stories in history. It’s in witnessing the triumphs of the books’ characters that readers are pushed, if you will, into inspiration, deeply encouraged. It’s also why readers feel as if they are getting much more than entertainment each time they pick up and read a great work of art like the volumes of classic African American novels.

Thank you for reading my blog. To learn what happens to Raymond, Brenda and the other characters in Love Pour Over Me, hop over to, B&, ($3.03 – lowest price I’ve found so far) and get your copy of Love Pour Over Me today. And again I say – Thank You! Consider Love.