Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Hey Boo

I will not be buying or reading Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee.

The reason why is this.  When she wrote it and gave it to her editor  she was told to go back and rewrite it.
"Go back and write it from Scout's perspective."
So she did.

In my opinion, Go Set A Watchman was her sloppy copy.  So wrong that she basically threw it out.

Harper is still alive but she is very unwell.  Her sister, her protector and attorney, died recently and with that came the decision to publish the book.

I do not believe Harper understands what is happening.

I believe she is being taken advantage of by Editor Hugh Van Dusen and  HarperCollins.  For money's sake.

Why am I so angry over this?

Our beloved Atticus is written as a racist/bigot.

The opposite of what Harper wrote in To Kill A Mockingbird.

It has long been thought that To Kill A Mockingbird was autobiographical; that Atticus was Harper's father.  So now Harper's father is being maligned.

Poor Harper has become Boo. 
She does not, sadly, have someone kind watching over her.

This book is being dragged out from a place it was kept.  Never meant to be read.

To my way of thinkin', Mr. Finch, taking the one man who's done you and this town a great service an' draggin' him with his shy ways into the limelight- to me, that's a sin. (Ch. 30)

And that's all I've got to say about that.
Donna Elsie


  1. Donna, I had not heard any of this, but your reason for not wanting to read the book makes sense. Thank you for sharing it. Have you red the book, "The Mockingbird Next Door"? It's non-fiction, written by a lady who lived next door to Harper and her sister. It's a very informative book giving insight into Harper and why she never wrote anything else. Grace and peace...

  2. Anonymous9:37 AM

    That is exactly how I feel, now, after reading all about it. But, the minute I heard Harper Lee had another book, I pre-ordered it on Amazon. I so wanted to own another literary classic written by a lady with such talent to paint a story with words.

    It is on its way to me and I am afraid to read it.

    I believe that there is no better book than To Kill A Mockingbird.

    Bridget in Minnesota

  3. I agree. No better book. No better man than Atticus.
    Since I was suspicious of the editors from the moment the book was found I wanted to wait...
    Please feel free to write me an email to tell me what you think about the book once you've read it.

    1. Anonymous2:19 PM

      If I do, I will let you know. Since last I emailed you, our computer crashed and we lost our old email addresses, so I no longer have yours. You could send me a note and then I will have it.

      Stay cool...it is a hot one today!

      Bridget in Minnesota

  4. Jamey sent me this article and I thought you might like it:

    TeamAtticus forever <3

  5. Anonymous10:44 AM

    I so which I had clicked on your blog 2 minutes ago. I literally just ordered it on my Kindle. To Kill a Mockingbird is my favorite book (well Gone With the Wind is my favorite, favorite, but still...). I don't want to be disappointed. I hope the reviews are somehow wrong. But regardless, I will read it and in the end, the original Atticus will always be who I remember...of that I am certain.

  6. I had read some place that Atticus represented Harper's sister/lawyer, Alice.

    I've never read TKAM, (hanging my head) but know many who love it dearly. I've watched this unfold with skepticism, and concern for the author's wishes when she was lucid; it surely was tucked away for a reason.

    I respect your opinion, Donna Elsie. I was hoping you'd address the topic. Thanks.

  7. Very well and respectfully stated. I wholeheartedly agree with you on this Donna!

  8. Completely agree with you.

  9. I am so happy to see this! My Instagram feed (via Barnes and Noble) has been blowing up with reposts of people buying the book today and I'm like, nooooo!!! I'm with you Donna, I just can't do it. I read TKAM in high school and again in my early 20's. I loved the book and now all this hub-bub does is make me want to read TKAM again. I just can't bring myself to read her new one.
    Jamie in Iowa

  10. Anonymous7:19 AM

    So many of my friends and fellow librarians were excited about the new Harper Lee book, but after reading reviews of it I have decided not to read it. Your post here makes that decision even better. Sounds like Harper Lee is in poor health, she is in our prayers. Her characters in TKAM feel like old friends. We have a friend who named her much loved dog, Harper Lee. ;-) love and prayers, jep

  11. Anonymous9:46 AM

    Hi Donna, I read a blog I respect yesterday (as well as your blog...which I love!) and maybe her guest's perspective on the book would be helpful in this discussion.
    The link is: http://sarahbessey.com/
    Have a look and see what you think.
    Nancy Peacock, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

    1. I read Sarah Bessey, also - so many voices and views about this beloved author.

  12. I totally agree with you. To Kill A Mockingbird is one of the few books I would take to a deserted island with me ... it's one of the BEST books ever written. I will not be reading that "other" book either. Good blog!! Linda

  13. I so agree with you. I felt the same way when a sequel was written for Gone With the Wind. I felt Margaret Mitchell did just fine the first time and I did not want Scarlette and Rhett messed with. I did finally try to read the book and it was so terrible. When something is perfection, don't mess with it.

  14. What an interesting perspective. So, here are my feeble thoughts. Although, she surely did not want the book to be published, it has been. And I want to read it so I can see her sloppy seconds. Her rough draft. Whatever it was she wrote, I want to read it because I can't get enough of her writing style.

    And perhaps her father was racist. Perhaps he changed. My Grammy, one of the most loving individuals on the planet was raised in Virginia. She was very poor. I never saw her mistreat a living soul. Man or animal. She did refer to colored people in a way that is INTENSELY derogatory. I think that is just what she grew up knowing. She didn't think it was derogatory in any way.

    I have a gift card for Barnes and Noble, so I think I will buy a hardback copy of To Kill a Mockingbird and get the new book on the kindle. We will see. I want Kaish to read To Kill a Mockingbird this summer. Maybe my little vampire can do it late one night while he is up with the bats.


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