Lena Hillbrand's Reviews > The Help

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
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Oct 14, 11

bookshelves: book-club, believe-the-hype, audiobooks
Recommended for: women in the US
Read from September 17 to October 09, 2011, read count: 1

3.5 stars

I read the first half of this book and listened to the second half on audio. I liked the parts I read much better. At first, it was a little hard to get into since it's written in dialect. But once I got into it, I really enjoyed reading it. When I listened to it, I just wanted to get it over with, so I'm not sure if I didn't like the reader of if the book just lost my interest.

I thought it was a good exploration of the relationships between women, both the supportive side and the cattiness. I've heard that a lot of people are angry about a white author trying to capture the voice of black women, or they say the book is stereotyped, or that it glosses over a horrible situation. I didn't really feel that way at all. I think it portrays black people in a very positive light, but I never had a maid or knew anyone who did, black or white, so I can't really say if the book is accurate or not. And it certainly does not gloss over racism and give us a happy Mammie figure. I liked all the characters in the book, although Skeeter's parts were somewhat dull compared to the others.

I also didn't know much about the maid culture of Southern families before civil rights, so that was interesting. I'd heard of rich white families having black wet nurses during slavery, but I didn't know so many maids raised white children even in the 1950's and 60's. So the historical aspect of the book interested me.

I liked that this book, unlike so many in women's literature, did not focus on romance. I'd recommend to anyone sick of reading romance novels disguised as something else, and for pretty much all women in general. A good modern historical fiction book.
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Reading Progress

09/18/2011 page 15
3.0%
09/23/2011 page 109
25.0% "the parts about skeeter are my least favorite"
09/23/2011 page 189
43.0% "Sucked in...sick w nothing else to do, so why not read?"
09/23/2011 page 184
41.0% ""In February, it'll be fifteen degrees and you be wishing spring would come on, and the next day it's ninety degrees for the next nine months." Sounds familiar."
09/26/2011 page 197
44.0% "tears in my eyes, shivers down my spine."
10/04/2011
50.0% "had to return the book, downnloaded the audio version. we'll see which i like better!"
10/04/2011
55.0% "Bleeeeeeegch! *Shudder*" 2 comments
10/05/2011
60.0% "I think i liked reading this better than listening. but it's still good."
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