The Help by Kathryn Stockett
I know that I'm behind the boat on The Help and that the book and the movie were crazy popular a while back. Since I don't read fiction, I had not planned on ever reading the book. But the on an airport layover it was on sale in the bookstore and I figured I'd see what all the hype was about. This was one time that the hype was worth it! I seriously could not put this book down.
This is the story of life in 1950 Jackson, Missisippi. It is written from three perspectives--one white college graduate and two black maids. When you read this book and realize that we are talking about how things were less than 60 years ago, it's shocking. You read about what you'd expect--the help being treated poorly by their bosses, being accused of stealing and made to use their own outdoor toilets. But what the book has that I did not expect was a sense of hope. Hope that there are people who see other people for who they are, not for the color of their skin. People who have strength and courage to take a stand when injustice is done. There are stories that will have you laughing out loud one minute and ones that have you tearing up the next. Oh, and if you think you know because you've seen the movie--you are dead wrong. It does not hold a candle to this book!
Here are my two favorite quotes:
"Every morning, 'til you dead in the ground, you gone have to make this decision. You gone have to ask yourself, am I gone belive what them fools say about me today?"
"We are just two people. Not that much separates us. Not nearly as much as I had thought."
Half-Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls
"History gets written by the winners, and when the crooks win, you have crooked history."
"I realized that in the months since my sister died, I hadn't been paying much attention to things like the sunrise, but that old sun had been coming up anyway. It didn't really care how I felt, it was going to rise and set regardless of whether I noticed it, and if I was going to enjoy it, that was up to me."
"Don't you little lady me. I break horses. I brand steers. I run a ranch with a couple dozen crazy cowboys on it, and I can beat them all at poker."
"Of course God exists and He hears you. He has the right to say no, you know."