Saturday, September 10, 2011

Book Review: The Help

I recently won The Help from Madame Bookworm and could not wait to read it. In fact I literally ripped open the envelope, pulled out the book, and started reading. I’d heard so many great things about this book and the movie previews look really good, so I was excited to read it. And this book did not disappoint.


The Help is about 3 women from Jackson, Mississippi, who join together to do something completely daring, unheard of, and illegal: write a book about what it is really like to be a black woman working for white people in 1962. In Mississippi. If you’ve taken an American History class you should have an idea of why this is such a major undertaking. The women, Skeeter – a white recent college grad who had grudgingly returned home and who dreams of being a writer, Minny – a maid known for her sass – which is not a good quality in a maid, and Aibileen – also a maid who has been thinking a lot about her life following the death of her son.

Together these women convince other maids in the town to tell stories of what they’ve seen while on the job and Skeeter, armed with a lucky break of a contact in New York, works on putting the stories together and sending them off to the big city. However once the book is published the trio goes from worrying about the book being published to worrying about what will happen once the women they’ve written about read the book.

The Help tells the stories of these three women and of those they encounter in their lives – both the other maids and Skeeter’s childhood friends who employ them. Throughout the book the women begin to view their lives in different ways and begin to think about the way things are and how they would like them to be – both on a personal level and in the greater scheme of Civil Rights and human interaction.

My Thoughts

I thought this book did a great job of getting you to think about what these women were going through and what was going on with the Civil Righters movement without ever feeling as though you were being preached at. I really enjoyed how historical events (such as JFK’s assignation) were mentioned in the book – they helped to keep you aware of where you were in time and gave you an idea of what was going on in the world around these characters.

I thought all the characters were very well developed and incredibly interesting. Even the characters who were less important to the plot were very well thought out. I grew incredibly attached to these characters and was so sad when the book was finished. I really wanted the book to keep going so I could see what happened to the characters.

I definitely recommend this book. It is well thought out, has great characters, and is incredibly well written. I cannot wait to see the movie as I’ve heard it is a great adaptation of the book. Overall I think this book is definitely one you should read.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

In My Mailbox 09/04/11

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren. It is an opportunity to share any books I have received this week in my mailbox, on my nook, or with my own hands.

Today’s IMM post actually has some books that came in the mail (shocker)! Plus I made 2 trips to Waldenbooks this week (the 2nd trip was to get something for Doug that I didn’t grab the first time).

In The Mail


The Help by Kathryn Stockett – I won this book from Madame Bookworm last month and was really excited when it came in the mail. I’m liking it so far.

A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris – my cousin Heather convinced me to sign up for recently and sent me a credit and this is what I decided to get first. I’ve already read the first book in the Aurora series.

With My Hands

0831111521 0831111523

0831111524 0901111645

These are all from Waldenbooks. Trip one:

I Drink for a Reason by David Cross (this is for Doug)

I’ll Mature When I’m Dead by Dave Barry

Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty (read it and loved it but didn’t own it)

I cleaned the store out on Diana Gabladon: Outlander 20th anniversary edition, Dragonfly in Amber, Drums of Autumn, Lord John and the Private Matter. I’ve read all except the Lord John book.

I almost cleaned them out of Jen Lancaster also: Bright Lights Big Ass, Such a Pretty Fat, My Fair Lazy, If You Were Here. All they had left after I was there were 2 copies of If You Were Here. I’ve read all except If You.

I also got Doug a big guitar magazine for $2 Smile

Trip Two:

I’m Dreaming of a Black Christmas by Lewis Black

In Fifty Years We’ll All Be Chicks by Adam Carolla. This is for Doug.

Mennonite in a Little Black Dress by Rhoda Janzen

At Home: A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson

James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl. I love Dahl growing up (my favorite childhood book is Matilda) and I know I didn’t have a copy of this. So when I saw it for $2 I decided to get it for our phantom future child….ok so maybe it is just for me Smile

I also bought 2 Borders reusable bags for 80 cents each. My reusable bag obsession is almost as bad as my book obsession.

Search This Blog