HARPER LEE IS BACK BUT WHAT ABOUT TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD?
We hear from our writer, Liz Champion, as she tells of when she discovered Harper Lee and why she loves To Kill a Mockingbird.
“I was fourteen and studying for my GCSE in English Literature when I discovered To Kill a Mockingbird. My teacher handed out copies of the novel and said we would be spending the next term reading, analysing and studying it. I’d never heard of Harper Lee or To Kill a Mockingbird.
As a difficult-to-please teenager I wondered if the school’s choice of novel would reflect my own reading interests. I presumed they’d deliberately choose something that would bore us. The condition of the books – old hardbacks that were falling apart –didn’t give me much confidence. This was a book that they’d obviously been teaching for years. The school, with its limited budget, obviously couldn’t afford anything better.
As a child I’d always loved books and reading, which is why I’d enrolled on a class in English Literature. But up until then, no book had really made much of an impact. I didn’t think this one would either. As soon as I started reading To Kill a Mockingbird I knew it was special. It was unlike anything I’d read before. It was a grown-up novel with a message about society. I loved the characters. I loved the story. I loved everything about it.
Sitting in my English literature class in 1994 I decided it was my favourite book. Since then I’ve read lots of other books. I’ve read contemporary literature and the classics, but To Kill a Mockingbird still tops my list.
I’ve always wished that Harper Lee had written or would write another novel. I didn’t think it would actually happen. When I heard the news that Go Set a Watchman would be released I couldn’t believe it.
In the build up to the launch I heard the negative reviews about the book. I’d followed the debate about whether or not it should even have been published. I took all this on board, but the comments didn’t stop me wanting to return to the world of Atticus and Scout. On launch day I went straight to my local bookshop to get my hands on a copy”.
Liz realises that Go Set a Watchman may not have the impact that To Kill a Mockingbird did but, like many book lovers, Liz cannot wait to read it. Go Set a Watchman has recently been described as a bad book that gave birth to a brilliant book but, Liz shares (that) “if that’s the case it makes me want to read t even more!”
Harper Lee is back and, to celebrate Harper Lee and a book that changed her life, Liz begins the first chapters of Go Set a Watchman. Do check back here very soon to hear Liz’s review of Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman.
You can enjoy 25% discount on Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman now at Times Bookstores AND receive a free copy of Haper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. More details HERE.