We have had a request from one of our readers to discuss “The Help,” by Kathryn Stockett.
I have heard it is a very good book, but I have not read it. I wanted to see if we all wanted to grab a copy and reconvene to discuss in about three weeks on Sept. 28. (It might be pre-empted if news breaks but we can aim for that date.)
Here is a quick summary from The Washington Post (from Amazon.com’s site):
“Newly graduated from Ole Miss with a degree in English but neither an engagement ring nor a steady boyfriend, Eugenia “Skeeter” Phelan returns to her parents’ cotton farm in Jackson. Although it’s 1962, during the early years of the civil rights movement, she is largely unaware of the tensions gathering around her town.”
“Skeeter is in some ways an outsider. Her friends, bridge partners and fellow members of the Junior League are married. Most subscribe to the racist attitudes of the era, mistreating and despising the black maids whom they count on to raise their children. Skeeter is not racist, but she is naive and unwittingly patronizing. When her best friend makes a political issue of not allowing the “help” to use the toilets in their employers’ houses, she decides to write a book in which the community’s maids — their names disguised — talk about their experiences.”
“Fear of discovery and retribution at first keep the maids from complying, but a stalwart woman named Aibileen, who has raised and nurtured 17 white children, and her friend Minny, who keeps losing jobs because she talks back when insulted and abused, sign on with Skeeter’s risky project, and eventually 10 others follow.”
“Aibileen and Minny share the narration with Skeeter, and one of Stockett’s accomplishments is reproducing African American vernacular and racy humor without resorting to stilted dialogue. She unsparingly delineates the conditions of black servitude a century after the Civil War.”
If you’ve already read it, you’re ahead of the game. Just remember to show back up to the blog on Sept. 28 to help discuss.
Should we put it to a vote or just plan on doing it?
Are there other books related to parenting, motherhood, kids, marriage, sex life or just life that you guys would like to suggest we read? We can set up a schedule. It would be good for us! (I always choose spy novels, biographies and historical novels about World II. Michael hates my book choices!)