Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Help

by Kathryn Stockett
finished May 2011

What a great book. I enjoyed this so much.
This book kept catching my eye for a long time. I would never read it because I thought that it would be really sad and frustrating. I knew it was set in the Civil Rights era.

But, a co-worker told me that she was listening to it and that it was so funny and charming. I asked her if it was sad and she said yes, in parts. But it isn't overwhelmingly sad.
Finally, I saw the trailer for the movie which is coming out soon. It won me over. I did listen to the audiobook - I downloaded it from NetLibrary.

Anybody wanting to read this ought to listen to it. There are four narrators. The chapters alternate between the three main characters and each is told in the first person. But there is one chapter told in third person. The accents and dialects are perfect.
It's interesting that one star comments on Amazon complain about the racist or stereotypical way the black people speak. I haven't really seen the printed book. Perhaps it comes off differently in print, because the spoken narration sounds spot on.

This is the story of change. Skeeter, a young white college graduate, gets the idea to interview "colored" maids for a book. Abilene, maid for Elizabeth Lefold, is the first to agree. She has been nanny to many white babies and has seen just as many grow up to let race come between them and the black lady they once loved unconditionally. She wants to change things even in the smallest way.

What a satisfying book.

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