Praise and Reviews

Selected as the 2010 Indies Choice Book of the Year – Adult Debut

Selected as the 2010 Southern Independent Booksellers Association’s Book of the Year for Fiction

Featured on the Today show’s “Ten Must-Read Books for Spring.”
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Reviews
Associated Press
“At turns hilarious and heart-wrenching…[A] pitch-perfect rendering. Readers are hooked.”

USA Today
“Thought-provoking…[Stockett’s] pitch-perfect depiction of a country’s gradual path toward integration will pull readers into a compelling story that doubles as a portrait of a country struggling with racial issues…This is already one of the best debut novels of the year.”

People Magazine (3.5 out of 4 stars)
“[A] wise, poignant novel…You’ll catch yourself cheering out loud.”

The New York Times
“In ‘The Help,’ Kathryn Stockett’s button-pushing, soon to be wildly popular novel…The two principal maid characters…leap off the page in all their warm, three dimensional glory. Book groups armed with hankies will talk and talk…[A] winning novel.”

Entertainment Weekly
“Graceful and real, a compulsively readable story. When folks at your book club wonder what to read next month, go on and pitch this wholly satisfying novel with confidence. A-”

New York Daily News 
“[A] story with heart and hope….A good old-fashioned novel.”

 Atlanta Journal Constitution
“Powerful…[Stockett’s] attention to historical detail, dialect and characterization create a beautiful portrait of a fragmenting world…This heartbreaking story is a stunning debut from a gifted talent.”

New Orleans Times-Picayune
“[A] winning novel, sure to be a wild success with book clubs. Warm and inviting.”

Christian Science Monitor
“Compulsively absorbing”

Publishers Weekly (starred review)
What perfect timing for this optimistic, uplifting debut novel (and maiden publication of Amy Einhorn’s new imprint) 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. (Feb.)

Library Journal (starred review)
Set in Stockett’s native Jackson, MS, in the early 19060s, this first novel adopts the complicated theme of blacks and whites living in a segregated South. A century after the Emancipation Proclamation, black maids raised white children and ran households but were paid poorly, often had to use separate toilets from the family, and watched the children they cared for commit bigotry. In Stockett’s narrative, Miss Skeeter, a young white woman, is a naive, aspiring writer who wants to create a series of interviews with local black maids. Even if they’re published anonymously, the risk is great; still, Aibileen and Minny agree to participate. Tension pervades the novel as its event are told by these three memorable women. Is this an easy book to read? No, but it is surely worth reading. It may even stir things up as readers in Jackson and beyond question their own discrimination and intolerance in the past and present.

 

Advance Praise

“Daring, vitally important and deftly handled, I loved and admired The Help. It’s very courageous. VERY courageous.  Fantastic.”
—Marian Keyes

“A story that made me weep as I rejoiced for each of humanity’s small but steady triumphs over hate and fear.  I will never forget this wonderful book.”
—Dorothea Benton Frank

“Lush, original and poignant, Kathryn Stockett has written a wondrous novel set in the deep south told through the authentic voices of Aibileen, Minnie and Skeeter, three unforgettable women whose lives and points of view intersect vividly against a landscape of hopeful change in America.  You will be swept away as they work, play and love during a time when possibilities for women were few but their dreams of the future were limitless. A glorious read.”
—Adriana Trigiani, Bestselling author of The Big Stone Gap series and LUCIA, LUCIA

“A magical novel.  Heartbreaking and oh so true, the voices of these characters, their lives and struggles will stay with you long after you reluctantly come to the end.”
—Robert Hicks, New York Times Bestselling author, The Widow of the South

“Set in the rural South of the 1960’s, The Help is a startling, resonant portrait of the intertwined lives of women on opposite sides of the racial divide. Stockett’s many gifts – a keen eye for character, a wicked sense of humor, the perfect timing of a natural born storyteller- – shine as she evokes a time and place when black women were expected to help raise white babies, and yet could not use the same bathroom as their employers. Her characters, both white and black, are so fully fleshed they practically breathe – no stock villains or pious heroines here. I’m becoming an evangelist for The Help. Don’t miss this wise and astonishing debut.”
—Joshilyn Jackson, Bestselling author of Gods in Alabama

“A wonderful book.  A compelling and comically poignant tale about three women, and a time and a place that are in many ways very much still with us.”
—Beth Henley, Pulitzer-Prize winning playwright, “Crimes of the Heart”

“I love THE HELP.  Kathryn Stockett has given us glorious characters and a powerful, truth-filled story. Aibileen, Minny and Skeeter, show that people from this troubled time came together despite their differences and that ordinary women can be heroic.”
Jill Conner Browne, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author of The Sweet Potato Queens series and resident of Jackson, MS