At the heart of SULA is a bond between two women, a friendship whose intensity first sustains, then injures. Sula and Nel are both black, both smart, and both poor. Through their girlhood years, they share everything. All this changes when Sula gets out of the Bottom, the hilltop neighborhood where there hides a fierce resentment at the invisible line that cannot be overstepped. Sula leaps over the line to roam the cities of America. After ten years, she returns to the Bottom. But Nel is a wife now, with her man and her children. She belongs. Not Sula. Nel can no longer understand her, and the others never did. Sula scares them. Toni Morrison brilliantly evokes not only a bond between two lives, but the harsh, loveless, mad world in which that bond is destroyed.