Title: Go Set A Watchman
Author: Harper Lee
Page Count: 278 pages
From Harper Lee comes a landmark new novel set two decades after her beloved Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece, To Kill a Mockingbird.
Maycomb, Alabama. Twenty-six-year-old Jean Louise Finch – ‘Scout’ – returns home from New York City to visit her aging father, Atticus. Set against the backdrop of the civil rights tensions and political turmoil that were transforming the South, Jean Louise’s homecoming turns bittersweet when she learns disturbing truths about her close-knit family, the town and the people dearest to her. Memories from her childhood flood back, and her values and assumptions are thrown into doubt. Featuring many of the iconic characters from To Kill a Mockingbird, Go Set a Watchman perfectly captures a young woman, and a world, in a painful yet necessary transition out of the illusions of the past – a journey that can be guided only by one’s conscience.
Written in the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman imparts a fuller, richer understanding and appreciation of Harper Lee. Here is an unforgettable novel of wisdom, humanity, passion, humor and effortless precision – a profoundly affecting work of art that is both wonderfully evocative of another era and relevant to our own times. It not only confirms the enduring brilliance of To Kill a Mockingbird, but also serves as its essential companion, adding depth, context and new meaning to an American classic.
Reading Go Set A Watchman was like stepping back in time. All the To Kill A Mockingbird feels came back and I happened to absolutely whiz through the book. It was educational and eye opening and relateable. It was timeless
You learn a lot more about Maycomb and its people through twenty-six year old Jean Louise than you do through six year old Scout Finch. The history lessons in how Maycomb came to be and the crucial role the Finches play was very interesting
Another very amusing aspect of the story was obviously stories from Jean-Louise’s adolescence, I feel like it lightened up the mood when things got too heavy or too political.
Speaking of politics, the context of the society that Go Set A Watchman is set in is represented SO WELL. From people’s opinions to their experiences and it was very interesting how you get to read the White people’s opinions (I’m sorry not being racist okay) on the whole civil rights situation. I haven’t read much from their point of view so that was intriguing.
In saying that though, the book also does a great job of providing balancing opinions from both sides whether it be through Scout or Atticus.
I have to say though, it was difficult to follow along sometimes because of all these American references and I’m obviously from Australia and I don’t really now all that much about American history to be honest.
Go Set A Watchman does a great job of re visiting all the characters from To Kill A Mockingbird and establishing where they are now. The dialogue throughout the book is absolutely spot on (I mean it’s Harper Lee) . Scout’s voice is so distinct and the overall prose just seems to flow well (I mean it’s Harper Lee)
But the book leaves you with some great overall messages some of them being to stand your ground, being aware of your individuality and remembering that everyone is human (even Atticus Finch)
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