"You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend."That's exactly how I felt about The Help. I simply couldn't put it down and wanted to keep reading to find out what would happen next. Some mornings, I was so engrossed in the story while reading it on the bus that I nearly missed my stop. At the same time, I didn’t want it to end, meaning I'd have to say goodbye to Aibileen, Minny and Skeeter. And what about Celia Foote - would she sort herself out? How about Mae Mobley? Would she be alright? Does Hilly Holbrook get what she deserves?
~ Paul Sweeney
Set in the 1960s in Jackson, Mississippi, The Help is the story of African-American maids working in white households. Told from three perspectives, it begins in a character-driven narrative style that gives way to a gripping plot. Relationships are established and, in some cases, forbidden. The drama inevitably unfolds in a manner resembling a train wreck; you know and fear what's going to happen but pray that something (someone?) will intervene and stop it. As a reader, you are truly drawn into the character's lives and situations, something that Stockett creates beautifully.
We have the movie of the same name on DVD ready for us to watch at home. I'm hoping it will capture the charm of these Southern women and do the story justice.
If you are looking for an excellent book to read during the holidays, make it The Help.