Somehow, I guess the publishers thought it was a good idea to ruin this childhood hero of ours, but IDK. Stores in Montclair (at Montclair Plaza) and Chino Hills (at the Shoppes) are also participating. “Until people actually have a chance to read the book it’s sort of like everyone is just reserving judgment and hoping that the book holds up”. “It’s a Monday. And school is out for the summer”.
“Would you like to kick it off?”
“I think it was a turning point for me as far as what the real world is like”, the retired kindergarten teacher said.
Starting at 9 a.m. the South Tampa store at 213 N Dale Mabry will have guest readers including authors, teachers, journalists, Florida Poet Laureate Peter Meinke and Tampa Poet Laureate James Tokley. The fact that the pages were discovered in a safe-deposit box in a bank, as if stashed like family gems for when times get tough, gives you a sense of how these lawyers, agents, and appraisers are thinking about the findings.
On February 3, HarperCollins announced that it had agreed to publish “Go Set a Watchman” by the 89-year-old reclusive author. “The 304-page novel takes place in the same fictional town, Maycomb, Alabama, and unfolds as Scout Finch, the feisty child heroine of “To Kill a Mockingbird“, returns to visit her father, Atticus”.
Noting several racist arguments attributed to Atticus, the Columbus Dispatch put it succinctly: “Those wanting to preserve a vision of Atticus as ahead of his time in civil rights should avoid “Watchman“”.
Have Lee’s admirers set the bar too high for any author, making disappointment over “Watchman” a distinct possibility? “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing except make music for us to enjoy”.
The time is the early 1950s, and Jean Louise Finch – still called “Scout” back home in Maycomb County, Ala. – is a self-confident 26-year-old working in New York. On Tuesday, the original story is released.
Which may be difficult to do.
Lee, now 89, appeared to have joined the literary club that includes Margaret Mitchell’s “Gone With the Wind” and Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights” when she stepped away from publishing and public life shortly after the release of her Pulitzer-Prize winning novel in 1960. Ms. Badham received an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actress for her performance, and developed a close friendship with Gregory Peck, who played the lawyer Atticus Finch, Scout’s father. An awful lot of readers are invested in these characters.
The bookstore, which is at 3120 Fairlane Drive, will be opening at 7 a.m., two hours earlier than usual, to accommodate the rush.
The debate among “Mockingbird” purists as to whether Lee ever wanted the work published intensified Saturday after fans learned an icon of US fiction could be regarded as bigoted going forward and forever changing the first book’s context. Would you want your state governments run by people who don’t know how to run ’em?…
In Ontario, “we will have 20 copies of “Watchman” available for checkout”.
“How could the saintly Atticus – described early in the book in much the same terms as he is in “Mockingbird” – suddenly emerge as a bigot?”
In Rancho Cucamonga, the two library branches will have 16 copies, and as of Thursday there were 10 advance requests, Library Director Michelle Perera told me. “I want to have a conversation [with my son], when he’s older”, he added, “about why we chose his name”.