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New Toni Morrison novel coming in April

December 8, 2014 

For fans of literary fiction, the announcement of a new Toni Morrison novel is kind of like that new "Star Wars" preview — it won’t be out for several months, but that won’t stop devotees from getting really, really excited.

Publishing house Alfred A. Knopf has released details about the Nobel Prize-winning author’s 11th novel, "God Help the Child," which is set for release on April 21. Knopf describes the book as "a searing tale about the way childhood trauma shapes and misshapes the life of the adult. At the center: a woman who calls herself Bride, whose stunning blue-black skin is only one element of her beauty, her boldness and confidence, her success in life; but which caused her light-skinned mother to deny her even the simplest forms of love until she told a lie that ruined the life of an innocent woman."

Like Morrison’s previous three novels, "God Help the Child" will be a slim volume, weighing in at just 192 pages. This will be Morrison’s first novel in three years, following "Home" in 2012. That book received somewhat mixed reviews, but Morrison, who is 83, has shown no signs of slowing down.

She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012, and more recently delighted comedy fans with a Nov. 19 appearance on "The Colbert Report." In that interview, Morrison told host Stephen Colbert that she’d just read her 1987 novel "Beloved." "It’s really good!" she said, drawing laughter and applause from the audience and a handshake from Colbert.

The novelist also jokingly tried to add another line item to her long résumé. Colbert noted that President Obama had said that Morrison’s "Song of Solomon" "taught him how to be." "Are you partially to blame for Obamacare?" Colbert asked. "I take full responsibility for Obamacare," Morrison replied to cheers, adding that perhaps it should be called "Tonicare."

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