Reader reviews and comments on The Poisonwood Bible, plus links to write your own review.

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The Poisonwood Bible

by Barbara Kingsolver

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
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  • First Published:
    Oct 1998, 543 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 1999, 560 pages

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There are currently 131 reader reviews for The Poisonwood Bible
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jeannie marie rudkin (08/19/15)

A very favorite book, one that I wished to continue long after reading it.
A very realistic family and all they endured when being sent to a land so utterly different than their home town, so many people that become alive to you through the lovely flowing of the authors writing, she takes you along.
Power Reviewer Kelli Robinson (11/20/14)

Southern Gothic Fiction Set in the Congo
This is exactly what I want from an award-winning novel! I was hooked immediately by the author's authentic southern voice and the way she expertly molded and shaped the four Price girls and their mother. The Poisonwood Bible was my kind of Southern Gothic fiction, but instead of being set in the American South, it was set in the Belgian Congo. If you decide to take this journey into Africa, expect Southern Baptist evangelism gone wrong, ignorant racism, the devolution of European colonialism, ex-patriot survival to the extreme, and the unmistakable bonds between siblings. Some readers were turned off by the apparently heavy-handed political tone of the book, but I was intrigued by the history of the Congo and the struggles of its people before and after Belgian occupation (and the impact of all on whites living in the country). There are images from this book that I will likely never lose - like a green mamba snake camouflaged in a tree and the distinctive light blue color of the inside of its mouth.
Dlee (05/15/12)

Poisonwood Bible is Poisonous Crap.
This book was highly recommended; yet I am struggling like mad to get through it. I am not impressed. You have to really like slow books to like this one.
Scott (02/26/12)

Could be better
I picked this book up after reading reviews on cover. It started well but lost its way about half way through. Kingsolver has done a beautiful job of describing the country and the character development of the daughters was great, but the male characters (Nathan price & Anatole especially) were single dimensional and shallow.

The reaction of Ruth-mays death from Nathan was feeble and Anatole's prison experience wasn't even mentioned. Rachael's character just plain annoyed me and I felt it would have been more poetic if she had ended up destitute. Overall quite confusing with place and timing details towards the end. I didn't know at one stage how Leah got to America, very confusing. Less pages and more male character development would have made this a much better book sorry. Disappointed.
Michael (06/26/11)

Fell Asleep on Page 50
This book was a waste of my time. Confusing at times with all the character switches and narrations. It was filled with religious allusions which bugged me to no end (and I'm even religious!) Drawn out and boring in large sections. As one review said earlier its was very hard to sympathize with the characters. The Father who was a Baptist priest was shown in such a bad light I hated him strongly. Oh well. So read something else.
BHLee (10/06/10)

Eyes Wide Open
An excellent study of the power of Faith, blind or otherwise. I'm a Christian but I am not in any way offended by Kingsolver's portrayal of the Prices. In fact, the family's journey in the story made me more reflective and appreciative of the need to understand the true meaning of life's destiny. I will definitely be looking out for other titles written by this writer, whose style is at once vivid and intimate.
Power Reviewer Elizabeth (07/18/10)

Haunting and a page turner
"Beto nki tutasala? What are we doing?" quote from Page 523......and...I asked myself that question throughout the book as the Price Family continued with their missionary work and all the hardships and heartache the family endured.

The Price Family...Father Nathan, Mother Orleanna, and their four daughters pack for their mission in the Congo trying to figure out what they should take...not knowing that most of the things they take will be useless and not knowing what is in store for them in terms of day-to-day living. While they are there, the country fights for its independence from Belgium.

I enjoyed the Price family...all except the father...the daughters made some life decisions that definitely had their father's influence.

The book is superbly written......you won't want to put it down. You also learn that your childhood and what you learn does follow you throughout your entire life, influences your decisions about career and spouse, and that you are like your parents no matter how much may not want to admit it.

A definite must read...it will haunt you long after you have completed the last page.
Meredith (07/24/08)

Come on...
Come on. Really? Is this author that hateful towards Christians that she has to make them look this awful?

It's a drawn out, wreck of a book that only tries to make Christians look ignorant and supremest, white people foolish, and Africans victims of missionary activities.

I couldn't read more than a page before I got bored of the story. I can't connect with the characters. It's ridiculous.

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