The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam, February 2009
*I bought this book myself and loved it so much I downloaded it on my Kindle as well.*
I originally read this book last summer and loved it. However, I did not have a book blog at the time so it was never posted here. Then I found out that The Help was being made into a major motion picture that is being released in a few weeks and I knew I needed to go back and re-read the story. It did not fail me, loved it just as much the second time. If you have been living under a rock you might wonder what is The Help?
The Help is set in Jackson, Mississippi in 1962. Skeeter Phelan has just returned from college to her hometown only to find herself an outcast. All of her friends left college early to get married and settle down, while Skeeter is single with a college degree and dreams of being a writer. While trying to make it as a writer she is challenged by an editor to write about something that disturbs her. It turns out that what disturbs her comes in the form of the hired help in Jackson and how they are treated by their affluent white bosses. Skeeter decides to write a book with the stories of “the help” and the households that they work in, opening the door to the hidden world of racial relationships in the South. This book combines so many emotions: heart break, anger, fear, hope and love.
Let me tell you how much heart this book has. I fell in love with Skeeter and her spunk. I think everyone can relate to her trying to fit in when everything around you changes. Aibileen, one of the maids, will make you want to stand up and cheer with her strength and dignity. Really, I loved almost all of the characters in this book….except Hilly, I loved hating her. But bottom line is this book takes an honest look at racial divides in the South, about people’s true character and how life is full of shades of gray. Run and read it before the movie comes out. You will fall in love.
So go….I give this book 5 stars (and you know I don’t like to give stars).