"Like The Help, Can't Quit You, Baby focuses on the layers of habit, antipathy, resentment, suspicion, attachment, and silence linking white employer and black employee—but in ways that are far more unsettling."
In the afterword to the bestselling 2009 novel The Help, titled “Too Little, Too Late,” author Kathryn Stockett voices a certain trepidation about “crossing a terrible line, writing in the voice of a black person” and worries that she has told both too much and too little in her story of African American domestics and the white southern ladies they work for in 1960s Mississippi. She concludes her afterword, though, by suggesting the benefits of crossing that line, benefits that included discovering the commonality of black and white stories and the ephemerality of racial difference. Above all, she asserts that the novel enabled her to ask her real-life African American maid Demetrie, long since deceased, the unspoken question of her childhood—what was it like working for Stockett’s fragmented white family? “I’ve spent years imagining what her answer would be,” her afterword concludes. “And that’s why I wrote this book.”