Erin King
Erin King asked:

My 12 year old daughter would like to read this. I have not read it in a few years and can't remember if there is anything graphic that she will encounter. What do you think about a middle school student reading this?

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Sidney I actually read this amazing book when I was exactly 12 years old, and I believe that it's crucial for children to understand that this actually happened and it's not pretend. I would absolutely have your daughter read this, the voices are authentic and it perfectly sums up events that occurred during this time period.
Riya Chaturvedi A book can be truly meaningful and can give their intended message and impact only when it is perceived at the right time and age. 12 may be too young to understand the problems of marriage,miscarriage and tragedy, she may read it now but understand very little of it. But once she's reached around 15 years or above of age when she has known issues like discrimination or sexism t better. A 12 year old has little idea about society and its norms, she may not be able to entirely comprehend the book.Suggest that she grows up a little more before reading it
Stauney I would only say the part with the naked man at Celia's house. Racisim is a heavy topic but if she can handle it, its a beautiful book. Maybe she could read "To Kill A Mockingbird" first? I think that's a great book to opening the door of discussing that age of racism. My mother had me wait to read it and I think it might have been better for me, but it really depends on your daughter. The movie is absolutely perfect as well. Less of the heavy stuff but the main idea still remains.
Colby Hi Erin, I read this book when I was 11 or 12 and I loved it. There are some minor sexual references, some foul language, and a scene of heavy drinking. The worst scenes I can think of are the miscarriage scene and the scene with the naked man at Celia's house. There is also some violence, but it's not described in great detail, and is an accurate representation of the time period.
Donna I would also recommend this book for your daughter. However, having a 12 year old that just read it and came to me with questions about the naked man"stroking himself" I would say that questions may arise. Fortunately, I am comfortable enough to answer her questions so this was not an issue with us but may be for some people.
Eden There is a pretty graphic description of a miscarriage, but if she's mature enough, it's written sensitively and she could read it. I would have been pretty disturbed reading that scene in middle school.
Siby I have read about 70% of the book so far and I don't find anything objectionable or graphic that prevent you from having your daughter read it. In fact, I would recommend that she do. This is a really good book that will allow the younger generation to appreciate how the world has changed in 50 yrs.
Nathanlease Hi Erin, my name is Nathan Lease and I am a 12 year old student at McKenzie Middle School and am currently reading this book. This book does have cursing in it and it tells about people who get shot by the KKK and then it talks about someone getting blinded because they were beaten. I would let my child read this (if I had one). I don't know what you would consider graphic, but the book doesn't have pictures. I can see it all in my mind, but I would strongly recommend this book because it does have good life lessons in it that I think parents should teach their kids. I LOVE this book because it has different perspectives from all the characters. Two chapters might be about Abileen's point of view. three or four chapters might be minny's point of view. There are three characters that the chapters are named after Minny, Abileen, and Miss Skeeter( Euginia Phelan). Again I would recommend that book for her
Meg I read this when I was 12 and I fully understood the book. Their is nothing too violent, but you may want to read it with her or check in every chapter or so to make sure that she understands. The only things that I would say were graphic were the miscarriage or the intruder at Celia's house.
Miranda Jenkins I'm actually 13 years old and I am actually about to read the book I have watched the movie and thought it was amazing but really depressing and I would totally recommend this book for your daughter she would really love it if she is in love with learning about the history like I am
Julie You have to gauge your own child's maturity. I think that a twelve-year-old will get from it what she is ready for - and then should read it again when older. there are different layers to get through.
this would be a good one to discuss with her though.
Michael Why would you censor what she's allowed to read? If she want's to read it, let her. Maybe talk to her about it afterwards, but never ever tell her there's something she's not allowed to read.
That's what totalitarian regimes and weird sects do.
Nena Yeah sure, if you think taking one's bodily excrements, putting in a pie, covering it with whipped cream and feeding it to another human being is okay, have at it then. I am sure your 12 year old will somehow benefit from this knowledge.
Kathryn The most graphic details I find are the descriptions of the treatment of the maids and other blacks in the community. It might be best to discuss this with your child and to let them know that not everyone is like that society.
Naynay I read it, and... I am 11 years old (almost 12 - 6th grade)
Sarah Maybe wait untill she is 16+. It's not the best book for kids.
Carol I think this book is geared to that age group.
Leigh Segel I got this book for my 13 year old daughter to read over Christmas vacation from school. The visceral emotions and compelling truth, knowledge and understaning that she absorbed through reading 'The Help' were priceless. I asked her what she thought about the book. She was inscenced that black people could not drink from the same public water fountain as white people. How unfair that would have felt to her, and how humiliating it must have felt for them.
Lilah I'm twelve, and I just finished it, there is abuse, between husband and wife, and cursing, along with some harder concept the grasp, but I greatly injoyed it. It really helped me understand fully what happened back then. My class is reading it, and I also read it independently, as long as you feel comfortable with your daughter reading this, then it's great.
L. Sevilla I was actually ten when I read this, and it was the most beautiful and inspiring book of my life despite some of the more adult content in it. I viewed the world differently and for the better afterward. There is small mention of one character who has a drinking problem and had only been able to still-birth and some profanity, but I would highly recommend it to your daughter.
BAC I wouldn't myself. It's not overly graphic but there is language that's not very suitable for younger readers. There are a few parts that are a little bit graphic but they're handled well and nothing indecent. I'd personally suggest it at 15 or 16 but you know your child the best as far as her maturity.
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by Kathryn Stockett (Goodreads Author)
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