Harper Lee’s novel, ‘Go Set a Watchman’ Divides Opinion


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Sequel, prequel but not equal? The companion novel to Harper Lee’s beloved classic To Kill a Mockingbird has hit the shelves in the last month and caused a popular and critical storm. It became the most pre-ordered book in Harper Collins’ history. No surprise given the now elderly author’s only previous novel has sold more than 40 million copies to date.

Set after, but written before the events in To Kill a Mockingbird, Go Set a Watchman follows the story of Jean Louise (Scout) Finch returning home to Maycomb from New York. She is shocked and confused by the changes she finds and the brewing discontent between White and Black amid the Civil Rights protests that swept the country in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Told in the third person this is no “unfinished novel” or even “first draft of Mockingbird” as some have suggested. Rather it stands alone and in some ways outside the orbit of its more famous relative.

I have curated a selection of reviews, background and info about the book below. Some positive, some negative. The only way to really understand any of this of course is to read both books yourself. We have added several copies of “Watchman” to our collection and have multiple “Mockingbirds” for your reading pleasure.

Read a selection of reviews and info below:

wash postBackground to the publishing of Go Set a Watchman.

guardian banner ‘more complex but less compelling.”

NYT bannerGo Set a Watchman gives Atticus Finch a Dark Side.

New Republic review

New Republic Review

Loads more reviews here.

 

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