Dear Commons Community,
For those of us who read Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” in high school or saw the movie with Gregory Peck, it appears that we will be treated to a sequel to be published later this year. As reported in the New York Times:
“Ms. Lee’s publisher (HarperCollins) announced plans to release a novel, recently rediscovered, which Ms. Lee completed in the mid-1950s, before she wrote “To Kill A Mockingbird.” The 304-page book, “Go Set a Watchman,” takes place 20 years later in the same fictional town, Maycomb, Ala., and unfolds as Jean Louise Finch, or Scout, the feisty child heroine of “To Kill a Mockingbird,” returns to visit her father. The novel, which is scheduled for release this July, tackles the racial tensions brewing in the South in the 1950s and delves into the complex relationship between father and daughter.
Although written first, “Go Set a Watchman” is a continuation of the same story, with overlapping themes and characters. But Ms. Lee abandoned the manuscript after her editor, who was captivated by the flashbacks to Scout’s childhood, told her to write a new book from the young heroine’s perspective and to set it during her childhood.”
“To Kill a Mockingbird” sold over 40 million copies yet Ms. Lee never published another book until now. When asked why, she stated she said all she wanted to say in “To Kill a Mockingbird”. In the 1960s, she retreated to a quiet life in her native Monroeville, Alabama.
Her new book will surely be a bestseller and a special treat for her fans.