Beloved is the story of Sethe, an escaped slave surviving the transition of freedom after the end of the Civil War, and her community of people moving on after tragedy, abuse, debasement and a life less than human.
Beloved is also the story of a stranger who appears at their door, bearing the same name as Sethe’s murdered baby, the same age if she had lived. She, Sethe, and Sethe’s last remaining child, quickly form an intense and dysfunctional bond.
I found it utterly heartbreaking, a wrenching look at how people brutalized beyond their humanity try to regain their feelings of self and their abilities to love and trust. What struck me hardest was their relationships with their children, not daring to love their babies when they’re not allowed to raise them, knowing they will most likely be sold off without notice and never seen again.