Thursday, May 9, 2013

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

My 2 cents:

To Kill A Mockingbird is almost as old as me. Written by Harper Lee, the Pulitzer Prize winning novel celebrates its 53rd anniversary in 2013. I listened to the 11-CD collection, read by Actress Sissy Spacek, recently. Books on audio is a great way to fill the empty moments and time spent driving, cleaning house and organizing paperwork. Who can resist a good story?

Harper Lee's novel, is above all, and after more than fifty years, still a good story.
Scout's constant questions, and her relationships with her father, Addison Finch, her brother, Jim Finch, and the family's housekeeper, Calpurnia, are still compelling. Learning about the Finch's neighbors in a small Alabama town through Scout's eyes is still fascinating; Arthur “Boo” Radley, still tragic and heroic; Bob Ewell, still mean and low-down; and Tom Robinson, still innocent and doomed.

Hearing Scout's story as an adult, I identified more this time around with Addison Finch, Scout's father. As an attorney in a small Southern town in the 60s, representing a black man charged with the rape of a white woman was dangerous. Addison Finch inspires all parents, especially single parents, to do the right thing regardless of public opinion.

To Kill A Mockingbird deserves its Pulitzer Prize, because it's a spot-on mirror to an important era of American history, because it's funny, it's heart-breaking, it's inspirational, it's well-written, its characters are timeless, and, perhaps, above all, it's a good story. If you or your teen haven't yet read (or listened to) Harper Lee's novel, the summer of 2013 would be a good summer to do it.

Length: 12 hours, unabridged

Worth Your Time? Yes x 53.

Bonus: Listening to Sissy Spacek's performance (especially the dialogue between Scout and, well, any other character in the story, especially Jim) is priceless. Also, did you know Scout's best friend and neighbor, Dill, was based on Harper Lee's real-life childhood friend and fellow author, Truman Capote?

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