Spoiler Warning

Book reviews and discussions may contain spoilers. Read at your own risk!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Landee Wants Her Own Bathroom...


...but not a crappy one out in the garage.  I want one that is free of little boy pee sprinkles and toothpaste globs.  But that has nothing to do with anything except that maybe I wouldn't mind some "help" myself sometimes.
No, this isn’t exactly a bright spot in our nation’s history.  Segregation.  It seems like a million years ago but it was only 50, if you can believe that.  Had my mother been raised in Mississippi she may have had her own Aibileen or (heaven forbid) a Minny.  Just kidding.  I adore Minny. 
While it isn’t something we like to remember as Americans, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  I loved the writing—Mark Twain-ish with the dialect but not so much you couldn’t understand it.  I loved the characters—they stuck with me for a while after finishing.  Even the ones I hated I loved because I hated them so much.  Hilly?  Oh my.  Elizabeth Leefolt was pathetic.  Stuart.  What a jag.  And then I adored all the coloreds (‘cept Leroy).  Oh how I wish I had Aibileen whispering in my ear that I was good and important while I was growing up.   I guess I could do that to my own kids? 
Nah. 
The beauty of this book is that while various tragedies occur (Yule May going to jail, for example) it ends up that everyone gets theirs in the end.  The good and the bad.  Two-Slice Hilly being the crowning achievement, of course.  Terrible.  Awful.  Beautiful.  And her own mother bidding on that pie in her name??  Priceless.  Reading this in 2010 was a spoiler alert though.  I knew times were a-changin’.  I was just worried they wouldn’t change fast enough and Aibileen would be getting a brick through her window--or worse--before it was all over.
This book also made me start to wonder what kind of “white lady” I would have been had I been in the League in Jackson, MS in the 1960s.  I would hope that I’d be like Skeeter (but with Celine’s body) but I’d settle for LouAnne (minus the depression & suicide attempts)  but who knows?   You’re raised a certain way, you believe certain things, you hang out with a B like Hilly and maybe you’re Elizabeth and it can’t be helped.  Or maybe you ARE Hilly.  ::shudder::  Makes ya think.

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