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The Help by Kathryn Stockett - review

Kathryn Stockett

❶A woman's history of multiple miscarriages is discussed; she and her husband are depicted as playful and flirty. It is my fear that she thinks we did not return her affection and only thought of her as the maid.

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At the end of the novel, what final words does Aibileen want Mae Mobley to remember?
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She plays bridge with the young married women; edits the newsletter for the Junior League; and endures her mother's constant advice on how to find a man and start a family.

However, Skeeter's real dream is to be a writer, but the only job she can find is with the Jackson Journal writing a housekeeping advice column called "Miss Myrna. Aibileen works tirelessly raising her employer's child Aibileen's seventh one and keeps a tidy house, yet none of this distracts her from the recent loss of her own son who died in an accident at work while his white bosses turned away. Two events bring Skeeter and Aibileen even closer: Skeeter is haunted by a copy of Jim Crow laws she found in the library, and she receives a letter from a publisher in New York interested in Skeeter's idea of writing the true stories of domestic servants.

Skeeter approaches Aibileen with the idea to write narratives from the point of view of 12 black maids. Aibileen reluctantly agrees, but soon finds herself as engrossed in the project as Skeeter.

They meet clandestinely in the evenings at Aibileen's house to write the book together as the town's struggles with race heat up all around them. Aibileen brings in her best friend, Minny, a sassy maid who is repeatedly fired for speaking her mind, to tell her story, too. Hearing their stories changes Skeeter as her eyes open to the true prejudices of her upbringing. Aibileen and Minny also develop a friendship and understanding with Skeeter that neither believed possible. Along the way, Skeeter learns the truth of what happened to her beloved maid, Constantine.

Constantine had given birth, out of wedlock, to Lulabelle who turned out to look white even though both parents were black. Neither the black nor the white community would accept Lulabelle, so Constantine gave her up for adoption when she was four years old.

When the little girl grew up, she and Constantine were reunited. While Skeeter was away at college, Lulabelle came to visit her mother in Jackson and showed up at a party being held in Skeeter's mother's living room.

When Charlotte Phelan discovered who Lulabelle was, she kicked her out and fired Constantine. Aibileen has raised 17 white children, but her own son has been recently killed in an accident at a lumber yard; Minny is forever losing jobs because she talks back to her employers; and Miss Skeeter, so called because she looked like a mosquito when she was born, is ungainly and unmarried and seemingly the only one of her class able to see there might be something unjust about their society.

While Aibileen and Minny are just trying to get by, working all the hours God sends them and then, in the case of Minny, putting up with a drunk, wife-beating husband, Skeeter is in the enviable position of being able to try to make something of her life.

She wants to be a writer. Her first efforts are wonderfully wrong-headed, but inspired by thoughts of the woman who brought her up — Constantine, who has vanished in mysterious circumstances — she hits on the idea of collating the stories of the domestic maids, voices never before heard in print. In this is not only a radical project, since if any of the white ladies found out their help had been talking in public they would have fired them on the spot, but also illegal in Mississippi, since it contravenes the notorious Jim Crow segregation laws.

The fruition of this project gives the book its narrative arc, but elsewhere the novel is a complex, immaculately structured but tremendously convincing nest built from secrets and lies. Each of the many relationships between the large cast of characters is perfectly captured, and there is layer after layer of irony to excavate when Stockett describes the lives of the society women of Jackson. But most impressive — and attractive — is the blend of rage and humour with which she writes and that is what makes this novel at once so horrifying yet so savagely funny.

The Help tops US box office but hits controversy. Get the best at Telegraph Puzzles.

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Gush, gush, gush, gush, gush! I cannot gush enough about this book. The Help, by Kathryn Stockett, follows the lives of three women living in Jackson, Mississippi. Two of the women, Aibilene and Minny are black, hired as help to wealthy, or trying to appear wealthy, white families/5.

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The book is narrated by three very different women; Minny, a black maid unable to keep a job due to her hot head, Aibileen, another black maid who is raising her 'seventeenth white child', and Miss Skeeter, at the opposite end of the .

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Summary and reviews of The Help by Kathryn Stockett, plus links to a book excerpt from The Help and author biography of Kathryn Stockett. I originally read the audio book edition of "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett and later read it on my Kindle for book club. The Help is most definitely on my short list for all time favorite books. I am not sure which was better the audio book or the Kindle read. This is the first novel by this author and I do not know how she will ever top herself.

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Our Reading Guide for The Help by Kathryn Stockett includes a Book Club Discussion Guide, Book Review, Plot Summary-Synopsis and Author Bio. I originally read the audio book edition of "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett and later read it on my Kindle for book club. The Help is most definitely on my short list for all time favorite books. I am not sure which was better the audio book or the Kindle read. Goodreads Book reviews & recommendations: IMDb Movies, TV & Celebrities: IMDbPro /5(10K).