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June's Book
The Poisonwood Bible
by Barbara Kingsolver

From the 2002 paperback edition (HarperPerennial):

The Poisonwood Bible is a story told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce, evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959. They carry with them everything they believe they will need from home, but soon find that all of it—from garden seeds to Scripture—is calamitously transformed on African soil. What follows is a suspenseful epic of one family’s tragic undoing and remarkable reconstruction over the course of three decades in postcolonial Africa. The novel is set against one of the most dramatic political chronicles of the 20th century: the Congo’s fight for independence from Belgium, the murder of its first elected prime minister, the CIA coup to install his replacement, and the insidious progress of a world economic order that robs the fledgling African nation of its autonomy. Taking its place alongside the classic works of postcolonial literature, this ambitious novel establishes Kingsolver as one of the most thoughtful and daring of modern writers.



“There are few ambitious, successful, and beautiful novels. Lucky for us, we have one now.”
—Jane Smiley
Washington Post Book World

“Haunting.... A novel of character, a narrative shaped by keen-eyed women.”
—New York Times Book Review

“Barbara Kingsolver has dreamed a magnificent fiction and a ferocious bill of indictment.... What we have here—with this new, mature, angry, heartbroken, expansive out-of-Africa Kingsolver—is at last our very own Lessing and our very own Gordimer.”
—The Nation

“Fully realized, richly embroidered, triumphant.”
—Newsweek


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