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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

Overall

  • 4.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    29,977
  • 4 Stars
    4,057
  • 3 Stars
    853
  • 2 Stars
    287
  • 1 Stars
    289

Performance

  • 4.9 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    19,290
  • 4 Stars
    1,734
  • 3 Stars
    325
  • 2 Stars
    97
  • 1 Stars
    100

Story

  • 4.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    18,278
  • 4 Stars
    2,518
  • 3 Stars
    493
  • 2 Stars
    149
  • 1 Stars
    127
Sort by:
  • 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!

  • Overall
  • Drinker
  • Glenwood Springs, CO, United States
  • 11-22-09

A MUST read

This is a brilliantly narrated story of the triumph of humanity over convention. We baby boomers all lived through it, each of us in our own place and our own experience... Kathryn Sockett transcends both time, place and race in her intricate weaving of the character of giving and taking. The narrators are just plain dazzling.

  • Overall
  • Wende
  • Waynesboro, GA, USA
  • 11-21-09

Best audio book!

This has been a joy to listen to. The readers make the story come to life. It is a well written tale of life in the 60's in the turbulent south. It opened my eyes to an era I didn't live through, thankfully. A difficult and tense topic was handled with candor and humor, with a little well deserved revenge that had me laughing out loud! I hated to see the book come to an end, and this is one I'd love to see come to the big screen (if they would do it justice!) I understand it is the author's first book. I am already looking forward to her next one. Kudos to Kathryn Stockett!

  • Overall
  • LIZA
  • Salinas, CA United States
  • 11-21-09

Loved it!

I selected The Help as my first audiobook download and I'm not sure if it's going to be possible for another book to match the enjoyment I experienced while listening to this book. I truly did not want it to end. I thought the actors did a spectacular job of reading their parts and the author wrote a beautiful, heartfelt and honest story. I love historical fiction so it was an added bonus for me that the subject matter was pivotal time in our country's history.

  • Overall
  • Andrea
  • Onalaska, WI, USA
  • 11-20-09

AMAZING!!! A+++

This was hands down the BEST audio book I've ever listened to. I'm listening to it for the 2nd time now and I STILL look forward to getting into my car and commuting to and from work. Also it's not a book that I feel is too graphic for my 7 year old too listen to. For sure no worse than some of the songs on the radio!! Oh yeah and this is the first time I've felt compelled to write a review... For anything....EVER... :)

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

The Help

The subject matter was very interesting and the telling of the story both heartrenching and compelling. The creative way the cultural paradigms were juxtaposed and the development of the characters was spellbinding. I was caught up in the emotional intensity of beliefs and the whirlwind of moral outrage. The voices and dialects were perfect for me and the characters came alive in my ear!


  • Overall
  • Catherine
  • Roswell, GA, United States
  • 11-20-09

Incredible Story! Outstanding Narrators!

I really loved this book...obviously...everyone loved it!? The narrators really made this book come alive. I've listened to hundreds of audiobooks, and this is by far the best match of story with narrators. I so wish the Audiobook publishers could learn a lesson from this - too many good books are ruined by bad narrators!

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Sticks In Your Head and Heart

The narration makes an incredible story even better. I was so absorbed by these characters that I extended my runs to listen longer. A week after finishing, I'm still thinking about the storyline and its lessons. This is a book you must listen to - especially if you or your mother grew up in the south.

  • Overall
  • Lynn
  • Loudonville, NY, United States
  • 11-13-09

One of the best!

I absolutely loved this book...the different characters narrated by different people made this book come alive for me. I had a knot in my belly the whole book...holding my breath as the characters did and I couldn't "put it down!"

  • Overall

No Help Needed

Because this book stands on its own. This book though long, flows smoothly and kept me interested. I love the fact that the different characters in the book are read by separate people. This really does give you a feel for what some people had to endure.