Saturday, May 23, 2009

Push by Sapphire

"Claireece Precious Jones endures unimaginable hardships in her young life. Abused by her mother, raped by her father, she grows up poor, angry, illiterate, fat, unloved and generally unnoticed. So what better way to learn about her than through her own, halting dialect. That is the device deployed in the first novel by poet and singer Sapphire. "Sometimes I wish I was not alive," Precious says. "But I don't know how to die. Ain' no plug to pull out. 'N no matter how bad I feel my heart don't stop beating and my eyes open in the morning." An intense story of adversity and the mechanisms to cope with it." From Amazon

Sapphire (aka Ramona Lofton) has had life and teaching experiences that give her insight into some of the topics covered in Push. The abridged audio version of the book is read by Sapphire and is extraordinary. One of the few abridged audio books that "works." The Alternative School teacher, Ms. Rain, is based on Sapphire's work with kids in similar NYC schools. I am just finishing listening to the audio version. The reading is powerfully moving, the subject is important. It's a topic we prefer not to know about; but it is reality for many people and Sapphire puts it under an eloquent unforgiving lens. Read or listen to this book!

The film Precious which will be released soon is a dramatization of the book.