Go Set a Watchman

watchmanGo Set a Watchman
by Harper Lee
2015 (written in the 1950s) / 288 pages
rating 7.5 – 20th century lit

Newly found manuscript gets hot sales because prior work is iconic and was made into a soul-touching movie. Is this sequel/prequel any good?  Go Set a Watchman takes place maybe 20  years after To Kill a Mockingbird,  but it was written first – I tried to understand it that way, but it gets a bit complicated.

Anyway I sure wasn’t expecting much,  but as often happens when my expectations are low, I’m  pleasantly surprised. This time however,  I was somewhat disappointed. I guess I already knew the “bad” stuff – rejected, unpublished, lost 1st novel in which Lee presents our beloved Atticus Finch as a die-hard racist of the 1950s.

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3 Responses to Go Set a Watchman

  1. jameswharris says:

    I think this novel is so much more–even as a standalone without comparing it to its more famous relation, To Kill a Mockingbird. Just take it as a story about a young woman who left the south to have a career in New York in the mid-1950s, and how she returns to see her father and friends so different from how she remembered them. In a way, this version can be seen more as a feminist statement than a book about racism.


    • Dagny says:

      I like James’ way of thinking. Considering that it has been over fifty years since I read Mockingbird, I don’t remember much about it. I remember it was a great read and I loved it, but not because of Atticus and ideals; I wasn’t even that fond of him. I think it was the prose and the style that impressed me.


  2. I was never a big fan of Mockingbird although I enjoyed it well enough. I saw too much political talk here, and it was too confrontational re the times it was written to be really marketable then – today it seems more like a slice of history.


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