About This Blog

This blog was started as a place to post book reviews. The books reviewed here will be mixed. Science Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, General Fiction, NonFiction and more. Both positve and negative reviews will be posted, as well as reviews for books written for all ages and all reading levels.

Many of the books reviewed here are ones that I have purchased for my own reading pleasure. Some, I receive free in exchange for reviews. Beginning in December, 2009 you will know which are the free ones if you read the final paragraph of my reviews.

Also of note: I choose what I will read, attempting to avoid the books on which I would end up writing a negative review... but I have been known to make mistakes. Thus you see some one and two star reviews here. Since I don't enjoy writing negative reviews, I only write them if the review was promised, or if the book was so exceedingly bad, I just had to say so. Regardless of the percentage of positive to negative reviews on this blog, I give my honest opinion each and every time, and have never received financial compensation for posting my reviews.

Note that, except for fair use portions quoted from some of the books reviewed, all copyright in the content of the reviews belongs to Lady Dragoness.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Powerful and Deeply Moving

The Help
by Kathryn Stockett
Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: Putnam Adult (February 10, 2009)
Rated 5 stars of 5 possible

It is 1962 and the world is at a volitile stage.  Immediately prior to the beginning of the civil rights movement, a young college graduate - Miss Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan - becomes interested in the plight of colored women working as maids to the elitist white women in Jackson Mississippi. "A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don't." - (Stockett, 2009)

Ms Stockett does a good job of realistically portraying the characters, making the reader a part of the story from page one. Her antagonists (especially the hypocritical and pushy Hilly Holbrook) were so realistic I wanted to tell them where to go, just as I would do in real life with people bearing the same personalities... and I wanted to alternately hug and beat some sense into the annoyingly passive Elizabeth Leefolt. who does only what she's told instead of showing any of her own initiative.  Miss Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny are, of course, to be admired for their determination and courage and daring.

Important historical events such as the murder of Medgar Evers and the assinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and John F. Kennedy were accurately placed at the times where they belong. This helped give a realistic historical sense of the times depicted as well as enhancing the story. The liberties taken with history were minor - using a couple of songs prior to the time those tunes had actually been released - which actually helped the story progress rather than working against it as a major historical flaw would have done.

The Help is one of the best new novels I've read this year - quite possibly the best of the best.  It should not be missed.

No comments:

Post a Comment