Set in Jackson, Mississippi, in the year 1962- where black maids raise white children, seen but not herd. There’s Aibileen- who is taking care of her seventeeth white child while missing her own, Minny- who is strong and cheeky for her own good and white Miss Skeeter who is back from college wanting a writing job and wondering where her maid has gone. All three cross a boundary and become friends due to a book project by Miss Skeeter that will turn the town into chaos.
I absolutely loved this book. The tension of the racial conflicts is gripping and the strength the maids have to go through with the day to day struggle of the white society rudeness is shocking while what they go through in their personal out of work life is truly remarkable. All three characters are loveable and just want to hug them, cry with them and laugh with them. You see them grow as each page is turned. The language of both Minny and Aibileen comes out at you and you automatically get into character!
The sub characters are written brilliantly (with Mrs Hilly being centre of all rudeness, Elizabeth disregard for her child and Celia who at first was mysterious but the kindest one of the employers) and as the book project starts you pray with them that it all goes to plan.
The ending of the book is open ended- leaves you guessing and wanting more!
It is now one of my top 10 books- many thanks Kathryn Stockett!