rating: 5 of 5 stars
Synopsis courtesy kathrynstockett.com:
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.
This book was a slow start for me, but once it got going, it was hard to put down. I was almost late for work one morning, because I had started reading and couldn’t stop. I literally sat down 4 hours ago to finish it, because I just couldn’t stand not knowing what happened anymore.
The Help is a riveting, entertaining first novel– I think Ms. Stockett should be quite proud of herself. I fell in love with Skeeter and Aibleen and Minny and Celia, pitied Elizabeth and hated Hilly to my CORE. I can’t imagine how frustrating it would be to live in such a time of change– on either side. To cling so desperately to everything you’ve ever known, only to have it pulling and growing and changing and slipping right from your fingertips– on the other side, wishing and hoping and praying for things to change, but realizing that things have to get worse before they get better.
Loved it loved it loved it– I kind of wanted Hilly to ‘get hers’ before the book ended but *sigh*. In a few weeks I’ll read it again!