To be perfectly honest I wasn’t sure if I would ever read GoSet a Watchman by Harper Lee. To Kill a Mockingbird was not that world changing book for me that it was for so many. There was much discussion of whether we should carry it here at the store. We finally decided we wanted to and I personally am glad that we are.
Scout (Jean Louise) is now all grown up and living in New York. She arrives home for a visit and finds that things, like all of us do, have changed. Buildings are missing, new ones are going up and even Atticus is starting to show his age. At 72 he is slowing down and his arthritis bothers him more than ever. But he is still her father and love him she does.
Aunt Alexandra believes the visit is long overdue and continues to express her disappointment that Jean Louise hasn’t moved back home, “because her father needs her,” as Alexandra is so fond of saying. There is also Henry, the young man that has been in Jean Louise’s life as long as she can remember. He is madly in love with her and also pushing for her to move back. All things that put her on edge and not sure she is going to enjoy this visit.
I am only one small voice speaking about this book and really I am kind of late at it, but I wanted to talk about this book. I had been asked to read it and so feel I must write a review on it. It is an honest review and if I had not liked the book you would not be reading anything about it on my column.
You will hear Harper’s voice all the way throughout the book. It is a rawer version of that voice, but it rings loud and clear, which does make for a delightful read. My wish is that she could have worked on the book a bit more and refined and edited it more. (More on this tomorrow.) But that was not to be and it doesn’t take away for the story she is telling us.
I found the book a very interesting read and am very glad I read it. I would love to discuss it in a book club and get all the different perspectives on it. There are loads of different topics addressed in the book and each one is sure to garner several hours of discussion on their own.
If you are still undecided on whether to read “Watchman” or not, let me encourage you to. There is a lot of food for thought in the book and you just might get a different perspective on a few things.