Skip to main content
PBS logo
Want fewer ads?

Search - The Help

The Help
The Help
Author: Kathryn Stockett
Be prepared to meet three unforgettable women: — 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 h...  more »
Info icon
ISBN-13: 9780399155345
ISBN-10: 0399155341
Publication Date: 2/10/2009
Pages: 464
Reading Level: Young Adult
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.

4.5 stars, based on 2483 ratings
Publisher: Putnam
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

ccqdesigns avatar reviewed The Help on + 51 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 54
Wow, what a book. I am from the south, and I was 10 years old in 1963. I remember the Sears where my mother worked having a Colored and White Bathroom and a Colored and White water fountain. I remember the outside door at the theater that said colored and led to the balcony and our delight when they finally opened it up to everyone and we teenagers could sneak up there.

I was not one of the kids that had a full time maid or nanny that raised them, but I had friends that did. What this book did for me is fill in the gaps that I never knew. I saw what was going on, I heard it, but I never really understood it, and my parents were more like Skeeter, people were just people. Yes, we had a housekeeper that came once a week because my mother had to work full time. She cleaned our house, ate at our table, cooked our dinner that night and we visited her family at the holidays and took them a turkey at thanksgiving and wrapped presents at Christmas.

But I wonder now what else we did that I was not aware of. How did we treat her and others that was considered "normal" then? Were we guilty of the prejudice and segregation-ism that is portrayed in this book? I have to say probably because we were a product of our time. I can only say that I am no longer that product. Everyone should read this book. Everyone. It is so true, correct and real it could have been my town or any town in the south in 1963.
reviewed The Help on + 330 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 25
Ill be the first to admit that when an author writes in multiple voices it takes me a couple of chapters to keep everyone straight, with that being said, The Help is the exception. Katheryn Stockett clearly voices each character and smoothly transitions between them all in a way that has them portrayed more along the lines of real live people then just single dimensional characters in a book.

1962 Mississippi is no place to be, white, privileged Eugenia, more commonly known as Skeeter because of her likeness to a mosquito has recently returned home from college and much to her mothers disappointment there is no ring on her finger. Aibileen has just returned to working for a white family since the death of her own child and Minnie, the best cook in the county is quite hard pressed to find a family to work for since she has quite of habit of speaking her mind, something that a white family just wont put up with.

As each womans story is told a truer picture of the segregated south emerges. When they decide to work in unison to write a book from the black domestics perspective looking at the white families they have loved and served a whole new picture emerges. The fear of being discovered, of actual prison time becomes all to real, but its a story that has to be told. A story that in a way will free them all.

At times you will be shocked, mortified, and laughing out loud, these women will have you hearing what they have to say for a very long time.
paisleywings avatar reviewed The Help on + 232 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 23
I love love loved this book from the first page. Three points of view and a wonderfully developed story that grabs your attention immediately. It is the best thing I have read in a long time. Most books I have read lately, once I'm done and close the book the story simply evaporates, but this story was one I could not put down and it lingers fresh in my mind. I want to pick it up and read it all over again. It has many emotional turns, sometimes funny, sadness, and critical awareness.

I love Abilene, Minnie, Miss Skeeter, and I will never forget the hateful bully, Miss Hilly. Plus, many more memorable characters who sent me back to a place and time best not forgotten.

Bravo! I hope Kathryn Stockett continues to write great stories.
bellasgranny avatar reviewed The Help on + 468 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 13
Stunned by how wonderful this book was. The characters are unforgettable and their stories are riveting. Incredible that this is a book written by a first time novelist. One of the best books I've read this year. I hate to part with my copy, but feel this book should definitely be shared. Can't wait for her next book. Very highly reccommend.
CozSnShine avatar reviewed The Help on + 13 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 13
The is by far the most touching, best book I've read in 2009. What is it like to be a black maid in Missippi in the early 60's? In fact, what is it like to be a white lady that hires the "help" at that time. Are the feelings between you real emotions or colored by the circumstances. Which of you are influenced, even when you don't want to be, by your peers? The world of black and white are a'changing and they are going to affect each of you.

This book is emotional, funny, horribly true and I couldn't put it down. You will love and you will hate as you read this book and you might even be surprized at which emotion is aimed at which character.
Read All 336 Book Reviews of "The Help"

Please Log in to Rate these Book Reviews

reviewed The Help on + 40 more book reviews
I enjoyed this book but like most others ... don't see what all the hype is about. It was good but not great ... worth the read, yes but didn't wow me!
reviewed The Help on + 3557 more book reviews
Gorgeous Copy, like new. Skeeter a young white woman finds out that black people are not treated equally in her hometown of Jackson, Mississippi. She sets out to avenge for her black friends but they avenge all for themselves.I laughed a lot while reading this book, because the blacks got such good revenge on the mean whites.Skeeter writes the town newsletter and was asked BY Dallas Bryce Howard's character a stuck up, nasty white woman to collect coats for blacks in Africa.Skeeter puts toilets in the town newsletter. so Miss Stuck up gets hundreds of toilets in her front yard.
prtyof10 avatar reviewed The Help on + 75 more book reviews
Set during the nascent civil rights movement in Jackson, Miss., where black women were trusted to raise white children but not to polish the household silver. Eugenia Skeeter Phelan is just home from college in 1962, and, anxious to become a writer, is advised to hone her chops by writing about what disturbs you.

The budding social activist begins to collect the stories of the black women on whom the country club sets relies and mistrusts enlisting the help of Aibileen, a maid who's raised 17 children, and Aibileen's best friend Minny, who's found herself unemployed more than a few times after mouthing off to her white employers.

The book Skeeter puts together based on their stories is scathing and shocking, bringing pride and hope to the black community, while giving Skeeter the courage to break down her personal boundaries and pursue her dreams.

Assured and layered, full of heart and history, this one has bestseller written all over it.If I could give this book a 10 star I would. The book was awesome and the movie stayed true to the book. In my personal library. A keeper for sure!
reviewed The Help on + 4 more book reviews
I loved the book. The characters were well developed and interesting. I was just a teenager living on the West Coast in 1962 and had no idea this was the way of life in the south. This brought to light why there was so much unrest in the south. It explains a lot. I normally read in the evening before retiring but one day I didn't have much to do and spent the entire day reading the book. That's how much I enjoyed it. I am also not putting it back on Paper Back Swap as I know I want to read it again.
reviewed The Help on
great book!
reviewed The Help on + 10 more book reviews
Wonderful characters. Great look at friendship and courage and injustice. Evokes outrage and laughter. One of the best books I've read.
reviewed The Help on
Civil rights told through the story of a white savior. Extremely sugar coated and unrealistic.
gdcleary avatar reviewed The Help on + 21 more book reviews
I really liked this book. I hate the way that the minorities in the south were treated. I was glad there was a character that would help them get their story out.

I will also never look at a chocolate pie the same way again!
reviewed The Help on + 404 more book reviews
So well written. Much more thrilling than might have been expected, and great humor and heart.
reviewed The Help on + 15 more book reviews
Excellent book. Interesting slice of (relatively current) history. Good use of different perspectives. Definitely worth reading.
reviewed The Help on
Fantastic book. Loved it so much the first time, I read it again a year later.
TSarien avatar reviewed The Help on + 55 more book reviews
Set in rural South in the 1960's, this book is a rather personal memoir of the lives of women on both sides of the racial divide. It is historically accurate in setting and language use; and of the narrative of events of the era... yet it failed to connect me to the characters. I understand the need to showcase this which was (and is) one of the most important moments in American Modern history, but as a novel it did not appeal to me as a reader.
This is the reason it is here, being swapped.
I am completely sure it will make the rounds of book clubs and readers clubs for YEARS to come; and it will spark debates about racism and its roots and how it affects our lives; this I welcome and quite likely will participate in.
reviewed The Help on + 117 more book reviews
Well written story.
booklit avatar reviewed The Help on + 473 more book reviews
best book I have read in a really long time

Book Wiki

Common Title
Original Publication Date (YYYY-MM-DD)
Minny Jackson (Primary Character)
Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan (Primary Character)
Aibileen Clark (Primary Character)
Hilly Holbrook (Major Character)
Elizabeth Leefolt (Major Character)
(Show all 6 People/Characters)


Want fewer ads?