Three ordinary women are about to take one extraordinary step.
Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.
Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.
Minny, Aibileen’s best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody’s business, but she can’t mind her tongue, so she’s lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.
Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.
In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women–mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends–view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t.
In my opinion:
I loved this book! It made me laugh out loud, cry and as usual with historical fiction – made me want to learn more about a place in time. In this case, Jackson Mississippi in the late 1960′s. Although I wouldn’t call The Help a full on historical fiction, it does vividly portray a portion what life was like in Jackson Mississippi – with focus being on the women – women of wealthy white families and their maids. The clever thing about this book is that it gives you multiple perspectives.
The characters are rich and believable. You’ll be cheering for some characters and wanting to spit on others. There are some very raw emotions here, but Kathryn Stockett has a way of weaving humour into the raw moments with her incredible conversational like writing style!
Absolutely a GREAT pick for book club discussions.