AUTHOR: Kathryn Stockett
GENRE: Adult Fiction, Historical
PUBLISHED: Penguin ( 2009)
*Published in Connect Statesboro, August 16, 2011*
“The Help” opened in theaters last week and drew a fine line between love and hate. The story is about black maids in 1962 Jackson, Mississippi. Aibileen was raising her seventeenth white child while hers was killed by a white man’s negligence. She had always taken orders quietly but a bitterness had grown inside her that she can no longer suppress. Her sassy friend, Minny, had certainly never held her tongue. Skeeter had just returned from college with high hopes to become a journalist.
Together, these seemingly different women join together to work on a project that could forever alter their destinies and the life of a small town. They compile a tell-all book about what it’s really like to work as a black maid in the white homes of the South.
The story itself was interesting seeing the southern world from the point of view of a black maid. It was heart breaking to see how horribly they were treated. The book was long and hard to endure because of cruelty. Every so often there was humor to lighten the mood, but not enough for my tastes for such a heavy story. It was hard to continue reading such misery and the vernacular of the maids was hard to grasp at times.
The writing was interesting because it was told from the point of view of Aibileen, Minny and Skeeter. Their views were recognizably deep, personal and heartfelt. The characters were very complicated and well written.
“The Help” is deeply compelling and thought provoking. Do not expect it to be a light chick flick, because it isn’t. But seeing the movie was totally worthwhile. The story is extremely emotional with deeply moving scenes and moments that will have you belly laughing. Watch out for Minny’s chocolate pie!
If you’ve read the book, the movie will tickle you pink because they stick to the book extremely well. The tiny details they inserted really add to the movie and the bits of storylines they omitted didn’t feel like it was lacking in any way.
The book was a difficult read, so I much prefer the movie. The story itself is very touching and had me thinking about it long after it was finished. I’d rate the book at 3 and the movie at a 4. They were both good but the movie was easier to emotional handle and there’s nothing like going to the movies.