Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Book bonanza

Someone else likes "The Help" as much as I did! 

Over the course vacation, I knew I would finish "Blood, Bones and Butter" by Gabrielle Hamilton, a fantastic read chronicling the rural, then city, back to rural (neighboring Amherst, specifically!!) and finally abroad upbringing of a fiercely independent woman, who is now the owner and head chef of a highly regarded New York restaurant, Prune. Her brutal honesty was welcome and endearing, and it's refreshing to learn of a chef who is not into the modern frills often found in cuisine considered upscale. The book ended abruptly, and I'm crossing my fingers she will write again. 

I had heard great things about "The Help," by Kathryn Stockett from those who had read the book or saw the movie. Truthfully, I learned of the book after watching previews for the movie, which caught my attention right away. I think I have an interest in this type of genre, having loved "The Bluest Eye" and "Beloved" by Toni Morrison.  I had requested it through inter-library loan but it did not come in in time before I left for vacation, so I borrowed it from Mum's cousin. (Thanks, Patti!!!). 

I couldn't put it down the entire trip. Right after I finished "Blood, Bones and Butter" on the beach in Camden, Maine, I picked up "The Help." Sean teased me with how much time I spent with my nose in the book. Hey, it's vacation, right? But really, I hadn't felt so invested in a book in such a long time, since the latest Harry Potter came out. I used to finish those books in a weekend. This book? 48 hours. I actually stayed up until 1 a.m. one night at Maher Hause (Sean's parents') reading it. 

I felt connected to Skeeter, the main character, (I'm sure everyone feels this way, too) who made the same choices I would have if I had been a character in the book. An independent, young, stubborn writer, working for a newspaper and writing on the side. Hi, that's me. 

Two quotes specifically resonated with me: "Who knew paper and ink could be so vicious?" and "I always thought insanity would be a dark, bitter feeling, but it is drenching and delicious if you really roll around in it." 

I highly recommend reading it.

Next up on my reading list is "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver and "52 Loaves" by William Alexander. Expect some baked loaves of bread in the near future. 


  1. I remember reading one of the Harry Potter books at the Wee Bonnie in 48 hrs. Had to give it up when we were leaving. Glad you enjoyed Help so much. It was a super read. NP

  2. What a ridiculously precious picture! :)