Amanda's deathbed request to her son, John, was for him to destroy all the lab notes etc. from her last experiment. She also blurts out he had a brother. At the funeral John meets Melissa, who claims to be his mothers biggest fan. Together with some of John's friends they go to Amanda's house, but none are prepared for what they find there.
An epic tale spanning forty years in the life of Celie, an African-American woman living in the South who survives incredible abuse and bigotry. After Celie's abusive father marries her off to the equally debasing 'Mister' Albert Johnson, things go from bad to worse, leaving Celie to find companionship anywhere she can. She perseveres, holding on to her dream of one day being reunited with her sister in Africa.