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meganbaxter

meganbaxter

I'm a grad student, an avid reader, a huge nerd, fervent roleplayer, wife, cat lover, tea snob, and obsessive keeper of lists.
The Help - Kathryn Stockett This book is problematic.

And yet, it's slightly too good to be dismissed.

But this book is problematic.

Any book that is by a white woman, about a white woman helping black women find their voices (or at least a publisher) in the Civil Rights-era South is going to be problematic. And yet, this book acknowledged that. But did it acknowledge it enough?

This book is problematic.

The author has been sued by her brother's maid, who has the same name and many of the same characteristics of one of the main characters. I can't say anything about the validity of the claim, but that also makes the book difficult.

This book is problematic.

So why can't I just dismiss it? Because it is intense, and really, given the subject matter, fairly sensitive to the race issues it brings up. It evokes an era of great danger very effectively.

And yet.

Complete side note: what the hell was up with the mother's disappearing stomach cancer? You can't have a plot point that big, and more or less dismiss it with "she decided she wasn't going to die." Cancer doesn't fucking work like that.

It is just, darn it, a little too good to allow me to ignore it, or to savage it or write the review I thought I might be writing before I actually read the book.

But this book is problematic.