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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
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

vibrant, beautiful, and deadly serious

Author Kathryn Stockett tears open a web of loves, hates, kindness, and violence and sweeps you along, breathless, from the first word to the last. I trembled and wanted to cry. I smiled and laughed out loud. I sat alone and thought about the book after I finished it. I am sure that I will listen to it again.

So listen to this book if you want to understand, in part, what life was like in Mississippi in the 1960s. The story is told from both 'sides'-- black and white. The ugly racism of the upper crust of Jackson, Mississippi is laid bare. The courage and desperation of the 'help'-- the black maids who wait on the elite-- is painted in honest, vibrant colors. Each of the three heroines will become your friends, each one a lady you wish you could call and catch up with. Most of all you will feel righteous anger at the horrors of racism, joy that things are better than they were, and a passion to continue to right the wrongs that still continue.

The cast of women who read this edition are perfect. The cadence and soothing rhythm of their performances will blow you away.

Put this one in your shopping cart. You won't regret it.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Timothy
  • Oak City, NC, United States
  • 11-07-11

One of my favorite listens

I have listened to 20-25 books through audible, and this may have been my favorite in terms of the listening experience. This is one of those books that is perhaps better in the audible format. Deciding to use multiple narrators to fit the characters was an excellent choice. The performance flew by and kept the listener entertained throughout. I would thoroughly recommend this book!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Dr.
  • Lake Oswego, OR, United States
  • 10-15-11

Slooow but ultimately rewarding

I am not sure what all the fuss is about this book. Having spent most of my childhood summers visiting my grandparents in rural Mississippi, I was very interested in this story and it rings true, for me, of the the south in the 60's. This story is very slow to develop, however, and it took great patience to stay with it until it ultimately became interesting at the end. Definitely not a page turner - but a thoughtful book that helped me to think more closely about what it meant to be black - and white - in 1960's Mississippi. Be patient while the story is developing. The narration is above average and helped to keep it interesting as the story switched between characters.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The BEST!

I have been a member of Audible since 2007 and have downloaded hundreds of books and this is in the top 5. Narration is perfect, story perfect, I just wanted it to go on. I fell in love with all the characters and would love to have an update in all their lives. I couldn't put it down or stop thinking about it. Powerful!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Marie
  • Arlington, TN, United States
  • 01-08-11

The Help

I can only recommend this book - it is awesome. You will become part of the bridge club, the league, the kitchen, the maids thoughts, wishes, fears and hopes. You will cry, laugh, hope, fear, tremble, be relieved and you will not want this book to end. It is worth every penny. The narration is the best ever!!!!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Frances
  • Kingwood, TX, USA
  • 07-07-10

My new favorite

The only dissapointment here is the fact that eventually the book ended. I loved it from cover to cover and will definately listen again and again. Narration was phenomenal as well.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

ABSOLUTELY AMAZING

When I first heard about this book a few months ago, I will admit I wasn't sure I'd like it. Well, once the tournament of audio books started, I decided to at least give it a try. I'll tell you this, the characters are so believable, and the narators bring this story to life. I laughed, cried, got mad, and every other emotion in between. I started this book Monday night and just now finished it, and I've not regretted one moment I spent reading.
This book taught me so much. I'm visually impaired, and so I know what it is like to be judged on something you can't help, or to have people think that I am so different from them. I lived with that for years. What I didn't realize, and this book pointed that out to me very clearly, is that I do the same thing. I may not be racist, but I judge people. This book might've been set in the early nineteen sixties, but to me, the message in its pages is still just as important now as it was back then. Thank you Kathryn Stockett for writing such an awesome novel, and thank you audible for sharing it with us.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Very Impressive

I listen to mysteries and thrillers primarily and normally prefer male narrators. This bood was neither and and still one of the best books I have listened to this year. Terrific story, great characters, brilliantly narrated and worth every minute I spent listening. DO NOT shy away from this book if it is not your usual genre, listen and enjoy.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Absolutely Wonderful!!!

I was so engrossed in the story that I don't want it to end. In addition to the book being a great read, the narrators really brought the story to life. It was almost equivalent to watching a really good movie.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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LOVE LOVE LOVE

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!

15 of 18 people found this review helpful