The Help by Kathryn Stockett – LOVED this book. This is the ‘blurb’: Enter a vanished and unjust world: Jackson, Mississippi, 1962. Where black maids raise white children, but aren’t trusted not to steal the silver… There’s Aibileen, raising her seventeenth white child and nursing the hurt caused by her own son’s tragic death; Minny, whose cooking is nearly as sassy as her tongue; and white Miss Skeeter, home from College, who wants to know why her beloved maid has disappeared. Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny. No one would believe they’d be friends; fewer still would tolerate it. But as each woman finds the courage to cross boundaries, they come to depend and rely upon one another. Each is in a search of a truth. And together they have an extraordinary story to tell…
It’s a brilliant read and reinforced to me how enormously America has changed in less than fifty years. Highly recommended.
The Missing by Jane Casey. Haven’t come across a really fresh British psychological thriller writer for a while, and this story of a twenty-something girl who discovers a body while out running, and becomes gradually more and more involved in the investigation of this crime, which seems to link back to her brother, who went missing 16 years previously, is very well written, with interesting characters and a brooding, dark ambience. Compelling and well worth a read if you like this sort of thing.
Miracle in the Andes by Nando Parrado – autobiographical book by one of the survivors of the 1972 plane crash in the Andes involving a Uruguayan rugby team. Amazing story of courage, faith and the triumph of the human spirit. I’ve never seen the movie Alive, which was made about this event, and have now added it to my Lovefilm list.