Monday, December 7, 2009

Book Review: The Help by Kathryn Stockett

The Helpis a book about many things. Skeeter, a middle class white lady, who is finding herself sick of the ideas that permeate her circle of friends. All she wants to do is write. When she comes up with the idea to write about the lives of colored maids, it is a lot more difficult to fight the norms of her southern peers. Aibileen and Minny are two of those maids, walking a fine line between what is acceptable to white society and what is acceptable to themselves.

The Help

Things I Liked:
I was absolutely blown away by this book! The story is so compelling that you can't walk away from it. And when you do finish it, the characters will haunt you still. It is beautifully written, with the perfect southern voice and the characters are absolutely perfect! They felt like people you would meet walking down the street (back in the 60s, anyway). After it was over, I kept wishing I could read more about Aibileen, Minny, Skeeter, and Celia. It is no wonder this book has received praise and great reviews - it is worth every page of the read! Here are some of my favorite quotes:
"What Hilly didn't understand was I hadn't planned it at all. When I started typing out her bathroom initiative for the newsletter, typing words like disease and protect yourself and you're welcome!, it was like something cracked open inside of me, not unlike a watermelon, cool and soothing and sweet. I always thought insanity would be a dark, bitter feeling, but it is drenching and delicious if you really roll around in it." p345
"Wasn't that the point of the book? For women to realize, We are just two people. Not that much separates us. Not nearly as much as I'd thought." p418
Things I Didn't Like:
Did anyone else wonder what was the point of the scene with a naked white man? It seemed so random to me. Maybe I missed the point...

The voice seemed so unique, but maybe Gone With the Windby Margaret Mitchell and To Kill a Mockingbirdby Harper Lee

s-factor: !@#%
plenty throughout

mrg-factor: X
see above mentioned naked white man

v-factor: ->->
some violence spoken of and one fairly gruesome scene

Overall rating: *****

Have you read this? What did you think? And what is the naked man's purpose?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage,
I will get a very small percentage


  1. There's a random naked white man?


  2. Loved this book, too. Glad you enjoyed it :)

  3. I just got this as a gift from my mom and am so excited to read it!

  4. I'm thinking that the point of the naked white man was to show the way Minny and her employer interacted when working toward a common goal. I could be wrong on that, but it seemed pretty random to me and that was the best I could rationalize!

    I loved this book and was so sad when it was over! It's definitely one to revisit later on!

  5. Britt, yes, yes there is.

    Susan, did you review it already? Maybe I missed it...

    Amused, I hope you love it as much as I did.

    Ashley, yeah I can see how it showed the interaction. It did seem completely random to me though.

  6. This is scheduled as our book club read in May! I'm not sure I can wait that long!

  7. I think it would be worth a reread - so definitely don't wait!

  8. I haven't read this, but somehow your mention of the naked white man has piqued my interest.

    Am I deranged? I mean, I assume it's not in a Darcy in his wet shirt sort of way, right?

  9. J.T., ha! I'm so glad it piqued your interest. I don't think it's deranged - let's be honest "random naked white man" is a pretty interesting phrase.

    And yes, he is very obviously naked.

  10. I've heard such great things about this one!

  11. Rebecca, I think it is such a fabulous book (obviously), so I hope you get a chance to read and review it too!


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