This 25th Anniversary Edition includes a new preface from Tayari Jones, and a new afterword by the author.

This is the story of Precious Jones, a sixteen year old illiterate black girl who has never been out of Harlem. She is pregnant by her own father for the second time, and kicked out of school. Placed in an alternative teaching programme, she learns to read and write. This is Precious's diary, in which she honestly records her relationships and her life.

'The Color Purple for the nineties' Vogue

'Sapphire's vibrant, unindulgent first novel has you cheering the awesome Precious on until the last page' Mail on Sunday

'Has all the power and vehemence of rap...brutal in its defence of the vulnerable' Independent

'Part wishful prayer, part manifesto, mingling poetry and humour...splendid, turbulent, bracing language...its music takes you over, its story grips... A voice to remember' Scotland on Sunday

'Harrowing yet hilarious... packs a powerful punch' Guardian


  • An inspired and inspiring debut, a The Color Purple for the nineties

About the author


Sapphire is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel The Kid. She is also the author two books of poetry, American Dreams and Black Wings & Blind Angels. Her novel Push spent thirteen weeks in the number one position on the New York Times Bestseller List and was nominated for an NAACP Image Award in the category of Outstanding Literary Fiction. In 2009 Push was made into the Academy Award winning movie 'Precious' described by Rolling Stone Magazine as the Best Picture of 2009.

Sapphire's poetry and prose has been published in numerous journals and magazines including The New Yorker, Black Scholar, PN Review, Spin, and BOMB. Sapphire's work has been translated into fourteen languages and adapted for stage in North America, Europe and Africa.

Sapphire lives in New York City where she is working on a new novel and a selected volume of her poetry.
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