Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Help
In Kathryn Stockett's stunning fiction debut, The Help, 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 seventeenth white child. 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 look 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 project that will put them all at risk. Why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. 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. A deeply moving book filled with poignancy, humour, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don't.