Recommended Reads: The Help

Friday, 17 September 2010

The Help

I will read anything. Classics, best-sellers, Twilight, etc. I love the books that don't make me think, just as much as those that do, as long as they're fun to read. When I'm in school I read a lot of academic and technical articles, so all I ask from fiction is that it entertains.

This quote has been floating around tumblr (with a link to a subscriber only article):

A lot of the people who read a bestselling novel, for example, do not read much other fiction. By contrast, the audience for an obscure novel is largely composed of people who read a lot. That means the least popular books are judged by people who have the highest standards, while the most popular are judged by people who literally do not know any better. An American who read just one book this year was disproportionately likely to have read ‘The Lost Symbol’, by Dan Brown. He almost certainly liked it.” - The Economist

This helped to solidify my motive for recommending books. I want people to read a lot. A lot of everything. I'll do my best to recommend worthwhile bestsellers and obscure novels.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett falls into the bestseller category. It's about three women in 1950s Jackson, Mississippi who dare to write about the experiences of "the help" (African-American women) working for middle-class families (Caucasian). While there's no profound new revelations about bad race-relations in the pre-Martin Luther King Jr. era in the Southern U.S., I think this book offers a worthwhile reminder: No matter how bad a situation is, there's always something you can do to attempt change. The Help is a pleasant read, perfect for an early-fall weekend.

I'm also looking forward to trying Molly's latest Orangette recipe for Leeks Vinaigrette. Cerre has a way of saying it best.

5 comments:

Julie said...

I love that quote from The Economist, it's bang on!! But I also loved The Help, which was such an enjoyable read. I read it last December, and brought it with me on a day when I was renewing my driver's license and health card on the same day, so was waiting around a lot- and it was a joy to do so, while reading that book.

Kate said...

Despite it being gigantic, I read this book in 24 hours! Could. Not. Put. It. Down.

I'm a sucker for bestsellers. I like to read to escape!

Jess said...

That's a great quote! And really interesting. I also read anything, and agree with you, that I love books that don't make me think along with those that do.

I read this a few months ago, it is such an engaging read! I totally understand why it's a bestseller.

I got a copy of Come, Thou Tortoise and am taking it with me on a flight next week, I can't wait!

Keep the recommendations coming, I love seeing what other people are reading!

Lydia said...

I too love that quote! I've been hearing so much about this book...I will finally have to read it once I finish Life of Pie (my current read). Also, I just discovered the Orangette blog the other day! Amazing!

erica-knits said...

Julie, I remember you telling me you loved this book. Was it ever good!

Kate, that's why I read, too.

Jess, I'm so excited to hear you found a copy of Come, Thou Tortoise!! Let me know what you think. I'm eager to hear your opinion!

Lydia, oh my goodness, you'd love A Homemade Life by Molly the author of Orangette. Love it!

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