Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

The HelpThe Help by Kathryn Stockett

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Kathryn Stockett has woven a story of heartache, humiliation, friednship and servitude in this wonderful historical fiction novel taking place in Mississippi in 1962. The relationship that develops between Miss Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny has far reaching and final effects. I loved Miss Aibileen, she was such a strong, loving parent figure to Mae Mobly (Stockett does a great job showing how the maids all have their own families---but love these white children like their own) I was so sad to read over and over again of the many children who are eventually turned against these nannies because of the racism that existed and the lines that could not and would not be crossed. Minny endures physical abuse from her husband and still has the mouth to stand up for herself and her friends. Miss Skeeter's job of writing their stories takes many suspenseful twists and turns and she suffers from her maid Constantine's disappeareance, her parent's refusal to discuss it, and it is her enduring love and bond with Constantine that urge her on to write the stories, and finish Constantine's story. This book is so moving and sad, even Stockett's own words at the end show the conflict of getting the black woman's point of view across and examining the roles between the black maids and the white families who employed them. I will be thinking about this book, the characters and the time period for quite awhile. I know my students will love this Reading Olympic book!

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