JV 's Reviews > The Help

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
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“Do you ever wish you could... change things?”
There are only a few novels that end up in my Home for my heart shelf, i.e. a shortlist of my all-time-favourite books. Those gorgeous prose remind me of limitless imagination, life's trials and tribulations, overcoming overwhelming odds with tenacity, fortitude, kindness, the strength of character, and love; and sometimes, it serves as a personal reminder about that gaping hole that nothing can ever fill. The Help is one of those novels.
“They say its like true love, good help. You only get one in a lifetime.”
Jackson, Mississippi, the 1960s - three different women (Aibileen Clark, Eugenia "Miss Skeeter" Phelan, and Minny Jackson) forms an implausible friendship that soon turns into a remarkable, unforgettable sisterhood that challenges the status quo. From this unlikely alliance, comes the unique set of voices that fought against racial segregation, inequality, discrimination in America while upholding civil rights. Armed with intrepidity, these women transcend boundaries and potentially risk their lives with the hopes of having a better life in spite of racial prejudice and bigotry.

This book greatly expounds on what it means to be poor, coloured, and female during those unforgiving times. There's no doubt that the narrative is feministic in nature. The prose is well-written and believable albeit I couldn't verify the accuracy of the entire narrative. The characters might have been considered a cliché for portraying coloured people, but the story, in my honest opinion, rings true. Its relevance is still felt in the present times. Taking that into consideration, this just confirms that everything is not well when it comes to race and other types of persecution still exist (e.g. gender, gender identity, class, religion, etc.). The dichotomy of love and hatred, black and white, and other polarizing ideologies remains. What a complex and complicated world we have!

Stockett also creates strong, lovable, yet imperfect characters that you'll be rooting for until the very end. My heart goes to both Aibileen and the sass-mouthing Minny. Hilly Holbrook deserves an Oscar for the most despicable villain portrayed by a character in a book!

Overall, this is a well-deserved 5-star read, especially for an impressive debut novel and a heartbreaking ending. As a reminder, I'll leave you with Aibileen's words of wisdom:
“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”
Audiobook sample and comments:
Read by Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and Cassandra Campbell. Absobloodylutely fantastic narration! Don't miss this one. Well done, ladies!
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Quotes JV Liked

Kathryn Stockett
“Wasn't that the point of the book? For women to realize, We are just two people. Not that much separates us. Not nearly as much as I'd thought.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“All I'm saying is, kindness don't have no boundaries.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“Ever morning, until you dead in the ground, you gone have to make this decision. You gone have to ask yourself, "Am I gone believe what them fools say about me today?”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“That's the way prayer do. It's like electricity, it keeps things going.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“I'm sorry, but were you dropped on your head as an infant?”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“Sorry is the fool who ever underestimates my mother.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“I'd cry, if only I had the time to do it.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“Once upon a time they was two girls," I say. "one girl had black skin, one girl had white."
Mae Mobley look up at me. She listening.
"Little colored girl say to little white girl, 'How come your skin be so pale?' White girl say, 'I don't know. How come your skin be so black? What you think that mean?'
"But neither one a them little girls knew. So little white girl say, 'Well, let's see. You got hair, I got hair.'"I gives Mae Mobley a little tousle on her head.
"Little colored girl say 'I got a nose, you got a nose.'"I gives her little snout a tweak. She got to reach up and do the same to me.
"Little white girl say, 'I got toes, you got toes.' And I do the little thing with her toes, but she can't get to mine cause I got my white work shoes on.
"'So we's the same. Just a different color', say that little colored girl. The little white girl she agreed and they was friends. The End."
Baby Girl just look at me. Law, that was a sorry story if I ever heard one. Wasn't even no plot to it. But Mae Mobley, she smile and say, "Tell it again.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

Kathryn Stockett
“Write about what disturbs you, particularly if it bothers no one else.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help


Comments Showing 1-20 of 20 (20 new)

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Jennifer (Jen/The Tolkien Gal/ジェニファー) Gorgeous review. Absolutely love your shelf name. Now I need to check out the audio.


JV Jennifer (Jen/The Tolkien Gal/ジェニファー) wrote: "Gorgeous review. Absolutely love your shelf name. Now I need to check out the audio."

Thanks so much, Jen! :)


message 3: by Daniel (new)

Daniel oh im so glad you enjoyed this! can't wait to read it


JV Daniel wrote: "oh im so glad you enjoyed this! can't wait to read it"

Oh, this one's really great! Love the story and the voices. Hope you enjoy this one as much as I do😊


message 5: by Sandra (new)

Sandra Great review JV. I enjoyed this book too!


JV Sandra wrote: "Great review JV. I enjoyed this book too!"

Thanks so much, Sandra! :)


message 7: by sue (new) - rated it 5 stars

sue It’s a classic for sure
Great review


JV sue wrote: "It’s a classic for sure
Great review"


Thank you, Sue! 😊


Adina Thanks for adding me as your friend. Loved this novel as well.


message 10: by JV (new) - rated it 5 stars

JV Adina wrote: "Thanks for adding me as your friend. Loved this novel as well."

Thanks for accepting my FR, Adina! :)


message 11: by Michelle (new)

Michelle home-for-my-heart is so cute! This is just another one of your delightful reviews, beautiful!


message 12: by JV (new) - rated it 5 stars

JV Michelle wrote: "home-for-my-heart is so cute! This is just another one of your delightful reviews, beautiful!"

You are wonderfully kind, Michelle! Thank you very much! 🤗


message 13: by Adam (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam  Wonderful review, JV! Loved it!!


message 14: by JV (new) - rated it 5 stars

JV Adam wrote: "Wonderful review, JV! Loved it!!"

Thanks so much, Adam! 😊 It's great to hear that you loved this wonderful book! High five! 🤗


Vicky "phenkos" Fantastic review, JV, this is a book that has stayed with me and that I'd like to re-read soon!


message 16: by JV (new) - rated it 5 stars

JV Vicky wrote: "Fantastic review, JV, this is a book that has stayed with me and that I'd like to re-read soon!"

Thank you so much, Vicky! This is one of my all-time faves. ❤️


message 17: by Dennis (new) - added it

Dennis Loved the movie. I should probably read this. And soon.


message 18: by JV (new) - rated it 5 stars

JV Dennis wrote: "Loved the movie. I should probably read this. And soon."

It was a great read, Dennis and hope you'll enjoy it! I have to watch the film 😊


message 19: by Dennis (new) - added it

Dennis Thanks, JV!
And tell us if you liked the movie. :)


message 20: by JV (new) - rated it 5 stars

JV Dennis wrote: "Thanks, JV!
And tell us if you liked the movie. :)"


Will do! 😊


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