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December 25, 1989 12:00 PM

by Alice Walker

The author of that elementally naturalistic novel, The Color Purple, wanders far afield—supernaturally, reincarnationally far—in a novel about the past, present and future lives of three Baltimore couples. One of the advantages of winning a Pulitzer Prize is that when you write a novel like this, it can be perceived as an interesting failure rather than just plain weird.

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