It was a thoroughly entertaining read but I can't say it was an eye opener. Although the book deals with a number of very important issues that are certainly prevalent today there was nothing in the book that was overtly shocking to me. Does that make me jaded and perhaps cynical I don't know? I don't want to attribute it to the fact that I'm part of a minority group because I've had the same sort of advantage and opportunity as any other person despite our racial backgrounds. However, because we hear so much in the media, have seen a lot of documentaries and I guess because I was born twenty + years after the era this book was written in, it might seem a little distant to me. However, Stockett really makes you feel as if you are there going through the multitude of feelings and occurrences that the characters face.
Aibileen is one of those solid characters that you know is dependable from the start, I don't exactly think her character progresses and strengthens throughout the novel but I guess it's because she has such a strong character personality in the first place. I particularly enjoyed her little secret stories to Mae Mo and her loyalty and affection for the little girl and through that for the mother. The only thing that surprised me was her eagerness to tell her story to Skeeter as I assumed she would continue to accept things the way they were .... so actually in hindsight her character does actually grow
Minny, she hooked me from the start. Brash and in your face I enjoyed her no-nonsense character. Which is why it surprised me that she wasn't the one ready to charge ahead with the book. And yes part of that was her aversion to Skeeter being white but a large part due to her fear which you wouldn't think she'd let overcome her otherwise forceful personality. The layers and overlaps of this character is what appealed to me and I enjoy her finally being able to stand up to Leroy and get gone. The pie incident does keep you eagerly anticipating the whole story and like Scott, I thought it would simply have been throwing the pie in Hilly's face but that could hardly be so Terrible Awful. I am also glad she does feel regret for her actions even if it was deserved. That's what seperates her from people like Hilly after all.
terrisbooks wrote:I also loved the book. After reading the posts on this forum , I think everyone is missing the stereotyping of Skeeter and Celia. To me that is what really made the book awesome. The author was not only dealing with the issues of the "help", I think she was dealing with stereotyping in general. Skeeter and Celia found acceptance with the "help" that they could not find in their own social circles. I think this also speaks volumes about our society.
I completely agree with you and I'm glad someone pointed this out. This book isn't simply clear-cut black and white scenario, there are intricacies that add depth to the story. I particularly enjoyed Minnie's interaction with Celia and felt Celia's story to be touching and sad. Her role as an outcast I think is every bit as important as Minnie's and Aibee's roles a maids. It warmed my heart how Minnie came to care for her and realise that being in a big house with a rich husband and being white to boot doesn't mean one has everything and are content.
Skeeter grew on me slowly. At first her motives are entirely selfish - she wants to get published but then she really starts to understand and most importantly respect the lives of the others yet she is still stuck in that - you could say conditioning of her upbringing to stay with the 'right crowd' until she is slowly brought out of that to finally realise that being true to herself is about her ideals and her behaviour rather than who she hangs out with. I found her relationship with Stuart wrenching and really felt for her there. Of the three of them I think she developed the most as a character and her liberation at the end is bittersweet.
I'm eager to watch the movie now and will post my thoughts on that soon enough.
Oh and one more thing, I was intrigued with this 'Sexual-correction tea' that Skeeter's mother gives her to drink. What on earth is that?? I really do feel for the poor thing.