Three ordinary women are about to take one extraordinary step.Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid, Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.
Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her 17th white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.
Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody's business, but she can't mind her tongue, so she's lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.
Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.
In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women - mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends - view one another.
This edition now includes the afterword "Too Little, Too Late - Kathryn Stockett in Her Own Words", as read by the author.
Bonus Audio: Hear an exclusive interview with Kathryn Stockett.
©2009 Kathryn Stockett, Cover Art: (c) 2011 DreamWorks II Distribution Co., LLC (P)2009 Penguin
"This heartbreaking story is a stunning debut from a gifted talent." (Atlanta Journal)
“It's graceful and real, a compulsively readable story of three women who watch the Mississippi ground shifting beneath their feet as the words of men like Martin Luther King Jr. and Bob Dylan pervade their genteel town. When folks at your book club wonder what to read next month, go on and pitch this wholly satisfying novel with confidence.” (Entertainment Weekly)
"[A] wise, poignant novel...You'll catch yourself cheering out loud." (People Magazine)
I grew up in this time and place. I have known these people, places and events. But, the vantage point taken in this novel is like none other. I was one of those white women who knew only the enviornment presented. Even then, I knew something was wrong about the strata of the society. But, admittedly, those feelings were vague and, for the most part, irrelevant to my life at the time. This book reveals the hard truth about the cavalier way middle and lower middle class whites treated blacks in the 60ish era especially in the south. Clearly the triumph of this work is the ingenious manner in which the message is delivered to the reader. The irony of oppression is seen more clearly when it is revealed how very much the oppressor "needed" (on almost every level)the oppressed. The engrossing narrative of these families and their hired "help" makes the truth of its message sting all the more. This book is so much more than a book about classism or racism. It offers a look at a time when lifestyles of one race were created, maintained and perpetuated by the subjugation of members from another race. However, this is no pounding morality tale. That is the power of this message. Ironically, the tale is sweet and for me, nostalgic; but its message is insidiously reavealing. If you think you have a pretty good grasp of "how it was then,"
you might want to withold that comment until you read this book. For me, it was spot on.
As an Audible Editor I listen for a living! British classics, YA novels, speculative fiction, and anything quirky, fascinating, or heart-wrenching.
I feel somewhat redundant adding on to this list of glowing reviews. There's nothing I can say that hasn't been said somewhere in this pile of 126 pages. But you also can't listen to this and just not comment. It seems rude somehow. So I'll repeat: best audiobook of all time, you will fall in love with these characters and narrators. PLEASE listen to this book!
I loved this book; the story is fantastic. It is mainly about 2 maids in the south in the 1960's, and the mood and voice really speaks. The reader gets a historical account, and a scary, yet oddly uplifting story at the same time. Narrators are great!
It's been ages since I had time to read or lsiten to a novel and ages since I've found words so captivating...poignent storyline with narrators who lend substance to its characters.
I'm a single parent, working full time and taking Anatomy, too, so I don't have time to stop; however, listening to this audio book has been an escape for me - once I started listening to it, I couldn't stop - I've listened to it in the car, at work and laying in bed at night - FABULOUS!
Can't wait until Stockett's next book!
P.S. The narrators are so wonderful - much better than the monotone narrators I've heard before - they can really affect my interest level, regardless of the plot - A+
This is a wonderful book to listen to with such eloquent southern voices telling the story. It is a slice of history from the south that lets us know how far we have come in this country today. Three brave women surrounded by characters that we love and others we hate.
I believe a reviewer should finish a book before submitting a review. What do you think?
This book tells an accurate and realistic story of these times in the south. Many may find it hard to believe that this all happened not so very long ago.
I lived this reality. I grew up in the south during the 50sand 60s. Our family had a black maid who helped raise me and was a favorite member of our family until her death at age 89. I so wish that she had lived to see our president sworn in.
Thank you Ms. Stockett for writing such a moving, beautiful and memorable book. This is one of my favorite books ever! I am listening again a second time already.
Hey Audible, don't raise prices and I promise to buy lots more books.
The perfect audio book... the perfect book of any kind but especially in audio. The book is over the top in every respect. Maybe one of the best books ever. You'll laugh; you'll cry. You won't want to put it down.
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what a pleasure! witty, heartfelt and moving. The hours I spent listening to this book flew by, i didn't want it to end.
I admit I am an audible book junkie; I have been filling my substantial commute time with books for about 10 years. The Help is a standout from both the standpoint of an extremely well-developed story coupled with extraordinary narration. The multiple narrators helped round out the richness and depth of each of the characters. I felt like I was in the room with them throughout the novel.
I enjoyed the portrayal of the start of the civil rights movement from the viewpoint of a black maids in Mississippi and their unlikely white story-teller. I did not want the book to end! I felt I could sit with the characters and listen to them tell their stories for hours. Enjoy!
Knowledge is knowing the way. Wisdom is looking for an alternative, more interesting road to get there. Audiobooks are that road.
The Help is a story based around three characters. Minny, Aibilene, the two black maids, and Miss Skeeter a college educated white woman. You get a background about each of these woman and listen as their plights bring them together to institute a project that will not only change their lives, but the lives of women in the town of Jackson Mississippi in the 1960's.
Minny (my personal favorite) is a shoot from the hip, no-nonsense black maid who is shunned by most of the white families because of a nasty rumor until she meets her new employer Cecilia Foot.
Aibilene is a middle age maid who has raised many white children in her years. She is loving and truly adores the white children she has raised.
Eugenia Phelan (Skeeter) is the white young women who is not afraid to cross the line to help these black maids who are victimized by their white women employers.
This book actually has a voice. The narrators make it come alive and you feel like you are right there. It is enchanting, delightful and a sheer pleasure to listen to.
After reading about the author Kathryn Stockett, I realized this book is loosely based on her own experiences growing up. How sad I was when it was over. I have never felt this way about a book before, I could have listened and listened. I will definitely go back to hear this one again.
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