Hello, fellow readers! Today I have for you my take on the bestselling novel The Help by Kathryn Stockett. This gem saved me from Pride and Prejudice, which I just couldn’t bring myself to read on past chapter 23. But you know all about that already with my post about boring books. The Help takes place in 1962 in Jackson, Mississippi and centers around three main characters, Aibileen, Miss Skeeter and Minny. The three band together, after much thought and deliberating on Aibileen and Minny’s part, to write (and hopefully get published) a book of stories about what it is like for a black maid to work for a white family in the heart of the south during the segregation era.
Even though the book is fiction, I really enjoyed learning (after reading about the author) that Stockett actually grew up in Jackson and had a maid herself growing up. I immediately wanted to see the movie after reading the book. I always do this. I HAVE to read the book before the movie. But, then sometimes I regret it because the whole time I am watching the movie I’m just evaluating everything. “Nope, that’s not right, they did it like ___ in the book.” “What the hell is going on?! They left a huge chunk out/that didn’t even happen/who do these people think they are?!” Yeah, I get pretty ticked off while watching the movies. The book is always. ALWAYS. better. But, such is life, they can’t make the movie 10 hours long now can they? *le sigh*
Here we have the three main characters, first Minny, Aibileen and Miss Skeeter. Miss Skeeter is an aspiring writer that got turned down for a job in New York but was encouraged to get experience and to try again and of course, to practice writing. Skeeter calls up the publishing company that turned her down to thank them for their encouragement. She speaks to Mrs. Stein and she tells Skeeter to come up with an idea that no one has thought of before. Immediately Skeeter knows she wants to write through the eyes of the help. Skeeter gets the experience by getting a job writing the Mrs. Myrna column, about housekeeping, for the local paper. She has to try and persuade her friends maid, Aibileen to help her write the housekeeping section (Skeeter hasn’t had to clean a thing in her life!) while conversing about her new job, she convinces Aibileen to help her write the illegal novel.
After getting Aibileen’s story and Mrs. Stein loving the concept she encourages Skeeter to get at least 12 more maids to interview. She assures Mrs. Stein that they are all lined up, lying through her teeth after Aibileen had already told her she had been turned down by 31 other maids. Reluctantly, Aibileen’s best friend Minny gives in and agrees to let Skeeter write down her experiences. Minny is a sass mouthing mess but is the best cook in all of Jackson. And boy does she have some stories! She used to work for Skeeter’s best friend and queen of the socialites, Hilly.
Hilly gets a funny feeling about Skeeter early on and starts snooping around and things turn ugly.
That is as much detail that I will get into so I won’t ruin anything for you but I do encourage you to get your hands on this!