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Publisher's Summary

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

Critic Reviews

"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)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall

Best of the hundreds of books I've listened to

I have listened to literally hundreds of audiobooks over the course of a misspent life, in all genres. This one is in a class by itself. First, the book is just wonderful: funny, heartbreaking, maddening, ultimately triumphant. But what is there to say about the narration? Except: perfect. You are pulled into the lives of the characters and you don't want to leave. Wait! Wait! I wanted to call. Don't leave! I want to know what happens next! I was hooked from the first 10 minutes, and I listened and listened until it was over. If you have wondered if this book really is as good as it's cracked up to be: the answer is yes.

  • Overall
  • Karen
  • Tucson, AZ, USA
  • 12-02-09


This was my first book to listen to on and I loved it!!

  • Overall

Poignant Insight

A fantastic book, and the audio version is very well done. The women narrating give great depth to the text and transport you into Mississippi in the 60's. The novel provides such an insight into the lives of "the help". A must-read and must-listen!

  • Overall
  • Arlene
  • Lawrence, KS, United States
  • 11-27-09

Didn't want it to end

One of the best audio books I have heard. The narrators made you feel like you were there. Excellent story that takes you back to the dawn of the civil rights movement in the South. I didn't want it to end.

  • Overall
  • sue p
  • California, USA
  • 11-27-09

Loved it!

This is a wonderful book made even richer by the reading as an audible book! I intended to listen to this slowly over two months while travelling - instead I was done in 5 days, addicted and greedily searching for my earpiece at every opportunity. Get this - your life will be better for the listening!

  • Overall
  • Amanda
  • Bloomington, IN, USA
  • 11-25-09

Delightful and mezmerizing

The kind of book you can't stop thinking about. Worth every minute! Great readers and a great book.

  • Overall

Richly written, beautiful read

This was a deeply satisfying audio tape. I would add something others haven't mentioned: it was gripping. Once the characters begin working on a project--you are full of suspense regarding the possible outcome.

  • Overall

Loved it!

Outstanding listen. I couldn't turn it off. The readers were excellent.

  • Overall
  • John
  • Somerville, MA, USA
  • 11-22-09

Just magnficent!

I am not a huge reader, but i LOVED this book. I couldn't stop listening to it! The narrators did a beautiful job!

  • Overall
  • Denise
  • Woodinville, WA, USA
  • 11-22-09

The Help

This is a beautifully read story with characters that a reader really cares about. I enjoyed every minute of it!