Rating: 4.5 Stars
“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.”
I adored this book so much. This book is set in one of my favorite time periods; the 1960’s. I think this book is very entertaining and very enjoyable to read, and was empowering.
As I said, this book is set in the 1960’s and I appreciate that the writing is similar to how people spoke then, especially in the south. This is fiction so not everything is historically accurate, nor does it have to be but the author gets pretty close to realistic, and that’s what I love about this book. The society is very similar to how it was at that time, white people basically hated people with color and this book explains that well considering that there are black maids.
The characters in this book were so good. Aibileen is one of the main characters, she is a maid, taking care of her 17th child, Mae Mobley, which she absolutely adores. Mae Mobley follows Aibileen because she’s the one who’s always there for her, and teaches her the lesson, “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” I thought Aibleen’s character was special and as the story goes on, you can definitely tell she’s getting very fed up with being treated than less than she is because of her color.
Minny is also a maid, she briefly is shown working for Miss Walters, but she is put in a nursing home and so, she works for another woman, Miss Celia, who doesn’t see her exactly as a person a color who should be treated as less. I enjoyed reading about their relationship because although Minny was careful of how she worked, she also has gotten used to talking with Miss Celia, and they helped each other. Minny has a tough personality, she’s sarcastic but she also is very loving to her children.
Skeeter is a white woman, who is friends with the town’s women in the social circle. But Skeeter is different from the rest, she rather write than follow the societal norms of getting married and having a family. She had a maid growing up, Constantine who was there up until she wasn’t there when Skeeter came back from school. She decides to write about the maids who work for these white women, inspired by the lies her mother has told her about Constantine, so she wants to learn the uncomfortable truths of what it’s really like to work with these women.
“All my life I’d been told what to believe about politics, coloreds, being a girl. But with Constantine’s thumb pressed in my hand, I realized I actually had a choice in what I could believe.”
The story moves at a decent pace, and I also like how the chapters are written in stories told by Aibileen, Minny, and Skeeter because it shows from the different perspectives of the society, and how each of them was affected.
I felt that this book wasn’t as stereotypical as other people may think because this is quite realistic, and all these characters and what they go through, they are very real. This might not have happened exactly because it’s fiction, but the way these women were treated, were very similar.
I did find the ladies in the social circle to be very annoying, mostly because I hated the way they discriminated those women, which also means that the author did a good job of writing it to make me affected and feel the emotion in this book. I was also wishing that Stuart had more purpose to this story because he came and went throughout this story, so maybe if he was more okay with Skeeter writing her novel, it could have added the fact that he wanted to see a change in society, but that didn’t happen, unfortunately.
Overall, this book was well written and quite accurate to the setting of this story, and the characters were well described. I loved this story, and I wish there were more books out like this one.
“That was the day my whole world went black. Air looked black. Sun looked black. I laid up in bed and stared at the black walls of my house….Took three months before I even looked out the window, see the world still there. I was surprised to see the world didn’t stop.”