Wednesday, June 08, 2011

The Help, part 2

I love all the comments, folks!  I feel like I should say that I don't at all object to popular books.  I write about comic books and romance novels for a living.  My favorite thing about the new X-Men movie was how yummy Michael Fassbender looked (I'm linking because it seems gratuitous to to put his picture on the blog again--I can pause while you go look, though).  So, I went into this book ready to be won over.

And here's the thing--if it had only been about the white women (what is up with Celia Foote? Will it be a good reveal? I'm fascinated by her?  And I'm findind Hilly deliciously awful), the book would be bearable.  Stockett writes well.  I want to know what's going to happen to these women.

But it's not just about the white women.  It's about the black women as well.  And the biggest problem I'm having so far is (I'm about 6 or 7 chapters in) that these women, who are speaking to us from inside their heads, are speaking as if they are talking to white women. Aibileen calling Jackie O "Miss Jackie" inside her head, Minny needing Celia to act like the other white women--it's like Stockett hasn't given these black women any space outside of the gaze of their white employers.  I don't feel like I'm getting to know them.  I feel like I'm watching a performance for my benefit. 

So, the verdict so far: I no longer want to gouge my eyes out, but they may fall out of my head from all the eyerolling.  And, also, what does she say in the afterword? It's taking all the willpower I have not to skip ahead and look.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Did you see the review of the movie in the Boston Globe?

Thought you'd find it interesting.