the Help: Kathryn Stockett
I really couldn't put it down once I started! I was surprised that the author was actually white as she puts the side of the black maids across so well. The book is written in first person terms from the 3 main characters - 2 black maids and 1 young woman from a wealthy white family. It is set in the early 1960s when segregation was still very much in place in the state of Mississippi and the lives of black women working as "help" for white families was very harsh. It's hard to believe that such things were going on in the second half of the 20th century in a 1st world country. A real eye opener for those of us brought up to be multi cultural and to respect people whatever their colour or religion.
Aibileen has raised 17 white children and is mourning the death of her 17 year old son. Then there is Minnie who has a great reputation for her cooking but a terrible reputation for saying what she thinks. Miss Skeeter has come home from college and dreams of being a journalist but her mother wants her married. Their lives become intertwined when Miss Skeeter persuades them to put their lives down on paper at great risk to their jobs and lives.
I thoroughly recommend this book especially to Claire over at History Fan!