To Kill A Mockingbird is one of those novels so classic, so peerless, that it’s sometimes hard to remember that it even had an author.
It only adds to that Great American Novel mythology that Harper Lee never published another book.
Well, all that is changing now.
55 years after the release of the original, the 88-year-old is releasing a sequel!
Don’t expect Go Set A Watchman to be a modernization. The story of Scout Finch as an adult was actually written six decades ago!
Ms. Lee explained in a statement:
“In the mid-1950s, I completed a novel called Go Set a Watchman. It features the character known as Scout as an adult woman, and I thought it a pretty decent effort. My editor, who was taken by the flashbacks to Scout’s childhood, persuaded me to write a novel (what became To Kill a Mockingbird) from the point of view of the young Scout.
I was a first-time writer, so I did as I was told. I hadn’t realized it (the original book) had survived, so was surprised and delighted when my dear friend and lawyer Tonja Carter discovered it. After much thought and hesitation, I shared it with a handful of people I trust and was pleased to hear that they considered it worthy of publication. I am humbled and amazed that this will now be published after all these years.”
It sounds like we shouldn’t be surprised that To Kill A Mockingbird is getting a sequel, but that it took so long!
Publisher HarperCollins offered a synopsis of Watchman:
“Scout (Jean Louise Finch) has returned to Maycomb from New York to visit her father, Atticus. She is forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand her father’s attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood.”
This sounds like a game changer for fans of the original — and American literature in general!
AND IT’S COMING IN JULY.
[Image via Bryan Howard/WENN.]