A PBS Great American Read Top 100 Pick
“A deeply soulful novel that comprehends love and cruelty, and separates the big people from the small of heart, without ever losing sympathy for those unfortunates who don’t know how to live properly.” —Zadie Smith
One of the most important and enduring books of the twentieth century, Their Eyes Were Watching God brings to life a Southern love story with the wit and pathos found only in the writing of Zora Neale Hurston. Out of print for almost thirty years—due largely to initial audiences’ rejection of its strong black female protagonist—Hurston’s classic has since its 1978 reissue become perhaps the most widely read and highly acclaimed novel in the canon of African-American literature.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Zora Neale Hurston’s second novel tells the story of Janie Crawford, a young African American woman in central Florida. Despite her humble origins, Janie wants it all: love, beauty, and magic—or, as she says, “flower dust and springtime sprinkled over everything.” Their Eyes Were Watching God is a black feminist novel that was generations ahead of its time when it was published in 1937. Although it was initially dismissed by critics, it was rediscovered and championed by Alice Walker in the ’70s. Combining ’30s Southern dialect with strikingly beautiful descriptions, Hurston’s story of self-love contains many lines so poetic we stopped to read them twice.
Customer ReviewsSee All
This book rewrote the definition of who I am, without my permission. Don't read it if you scare easy. This book moved me from one end of myself to other, then blew my heart wide open and took me by the hand and walked me around the edges of the explosion, poimtig out the mess and explaining why we so beautiful, all of us.
This is one of the most beautiful, most powerful novels ever written. Hurston was one of the masters of American folk stories. Her writing is rich and detailed. The characters really come to life in all of their beauty and ugliness.
One of My Favorites
I read this book for my AP English class, and I truly loved it! I'll probably be returning to it again and again