A bit late due to illness, but better late than never!
This review of Sapphire's 'Push' by Michiko Kakutani discusses it as a book about the villainisation of women by men, that is perhaps more evident through the review than it is in the actual novel. It is obvious that the rapings, abuse and murder done to Precious and her friends is committed by men, although Kakutani fails to notice that although Precious' abusive father has now left her and her mother (although sometimes still returns), Precious should be safe from harm, but it is her mother that still carries on the vicious cycle of physical and sexual abuse towards her, which although evident in the novel, it does not seem to register as significant in this review or any others. Kakutani says that 'Push' shows men as 'pigs who only think about sex' but what about Precious' mother?
The statement that the novel leaves 'the reader with the feeling that one has abruptly exited the world of the novel and entered the world of a support group' is true, as it is a very absorbing novel that transports the reader to a world perhaps unknown to them, especially with the aid of the authentic language used. However, I do not agree with the final comment that 'in trying to open out her heroine's story and turn it into a more general comment on society, Sapphire has made the tale of Precious decidedly less moving than it might have been' as it is a social commentary (and a very realistic, raw and earnest one at that), but it far from 'less moving than it might have been'. The story of Precious is incredibly moving and heart-wrenching and can surely be called a masterpiece of writing on Sapphire's behalf.