Independent Reading Benchmark.

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Tar Baby:The Review

Have you ever been on a journey to find yourself? Have you ever been on a journey to find someone else? Have you ever realized that you knew who you were, but did not want to face the truth? If you said, “Yes” to all those answers, then you will want to read the book, “Tar Baby.” The book, “Tar Baby” is written by Toni Morrison during the 1980’s. Toni Morrison is a writer who is in touch with all her characters. She knows what she wants to do with them and what she wants to say. I did a little research, and she is an accomplished writer. In addition to that information, “Tar Baby” was a, “National Bestseller.” In her books, there is always a great story. The book, “Tar Baby”, is about a love affair between two African-American people who have not quite figured themselves out and come from two different worlds. While that is all happening, there are several other stories that are behind the surface. Read more below to see where this journey takes us.

The main characters include Jadine, Son, Valerian, Margaret, Ondine, and Sydney. In the novel, the character Jadine is a young African-American beautiful model. Jadine has come to L'Arbre de la Croix, Isle des Chavalliers to visit her Aunt and uncle(Ondine and Sydney) who works for a wealthy white man named Valerian. Jadine goes through a lot of things because she does not want to tell them that she wants to leave. This is because she is the only family they have and they consider her a daughter. She know that if she tells them they will disapprove, but she wants to follow her heart. While visiting, she notices what goes on between Valerian and his wife, Margaret. They bicker and argue a lot about their son Michael. No one can really understand why she is obsessed with him or so she thinks. You see, when Michael was a young boy, she abused him and he started to hide under the sink. Valerian couldn’t understand why until Ondine blurted this out at the dinner table. During this, Son, a fugitive in the Americas, is found in a closet by Margaret and Sydney, where he has been for several days. Once he is found, he is taken care of by the help. After seeing Jadine, he can not help, but to get involved with her. As Jadine gets to know Son, she finds herself beginning to fall in love with this criminal who her Aunt Ondine, and her uncle Sydney, despises.

Once they realize they are in love with each other, Jadine and Son go back to America to be with each other. While there, they share an intimate relationship and revisits Sons childhood hometown. After visiting there, they go back up to New York. While back in New York, Jadine endures an abusive relationship with Son. She questions him on his future and it gets all chaotic from there. The fact that Son is being stubborn about something so important makes Jadine very agitated. She can not understand why he wants to be that way. So, Jadine leaves after enduring the physical and verbal abuse and goes back to the island where Son follows her. But, she then returns to Paris, but Son stays o the island.

There are many conflicts in the story including  person vs. person, person vs. self, and person vs. nature. Jadine goes through person vs. person with Son throughout the entire novel. They have a physical and sexual relationship. Those relationships include violence and she struggles on how to perceive their relationship. This to me is a crazy relationship, but it has depth to it. Margaret goes through person vs. self. She battles with herself throughout the novel about her secret until it is exposed. She battles with the abuse she did to her son and it is a burden to her. She does not know really how to deal with her emotions so she has to constantly deal it and be obsessed. Additionally, Son goes through person vs. nature. He goes through that because he has to hide away in the hot closet for several days. Not only that, but when he first gets there he is in a tree watching her and that is when he realized that he wanted her. These are all examples in where conflict was displayed. Furthermore, I believe that Jadine was the best character. I say that because she knows what she wants. That being said, she also wants to please everyone around her. That makes me want to be like her because although she feels that way, she wants to follow her heart, too. She has a deep meaning behind her character.

I can not relate to any characters in the story. i could not relate to anyone in, “Tar Baby” becauseI have not had any of the experiences that the characters have had. For example, Son is an abuser who is on the run and is in love with a woman who does not want him. I am none of these and I have never been in love before. Most of his problems are self-inflicted. Not only that, but most of these characters are mean-spirited. They have coal in them and they all seem to have something they do not like about someone and can always point that out. I do not act like that in any way and I feel like I can not relate to them. My personal opinion on the book? Well, I believe that the book was terrible and I would not recommend this book to anyone. I say that because the book was altogether irrelvant and I did not understand why it was written. To add fuel to the fire, it was boring. There was no action whatsoever and the first few chapters of the book was meaningless.  If I had to give the book a rating out of 5 stars, I would literally give it a 1 star. I would give it that because at least she tried to write something. Other than that, the book itself was horrible. It was kind of difficult to read at first, but as I kept on, I began to understand the language based on the time period. If I could, I would change a lot about the book. I would make the book have more action and a deeper meaning. The book lacked a lot of things including a theme in my opinion. I did not understand the message that Toni Morrison was trying to convey to her readers. Overall, I did not enjoy this book. If I were you, I wouldn’t pick up this novel, but hey if you like reading boring books and need something to knock you out, here is your nyquil.