Friday, April 16, 2010

Push (1996)

This novel by the author, Sapphire, is about a sixteen-year old girl who, when we meet her, is pregnant, illiterate, and being kicked out of her school. This is her second child, both from incestual relations with her father. Her mother, jealous of her husband's attention to Precious, abuses her physically, emotionally, and sexually.

Precious knows the only way out of this is to get her G.E.D., find work and accomodations for herself and her child. Luckily, she enters an alternative school and starts to learn to read and write.

I big, I talk, I eats, I cooks, I laugh, watch TV, do what my muver say. But I can see when the picture come back I don't exist. Don't nobody want me. Don't nobody need me. I know who I am. I know who they say I am -- vampire sucking the system's blood. Ugly black grease to be wipe away, punish, kilt, changed, finded a job for.
I wanna say I am somebody. I wanna say it on subway, TV, movie, LOUD. I see
the pink faces in suits look over top of my head. I watch myself disappear in
their eyes, their tesses [tests]. I talk loud but still I don't exist.
As Precious shows remarkable progress in her classes and learns she is not alone in her support groups, we see her language improve and see her learn she is not alone in her experiences.

This is a very tough read because of the suffering this girl has been through. Readers should be warned that there is sexual content and that it is raw and not pretty.

My rating for this book: ++++

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