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Harper Lee to Publish Sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird This Summer

Harper Lee to Publish Sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird This Summer

Harper Lee has just announced that she will be publishing a second novel, Go Set a Watchman this summer. 

The novel, which is a sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird, will be the first new work in more than 50 years, according to an article on ABCNews.com. 

"In the mid-1950s, I completed a novel called Go Set a Watchman," the 88-year-old Lee said in a statement issued by Harper, according to the article. "It features the character known as Scout as an adult woman, and I thought it a pretty decent effort. My editor, who was taken by the flashbacks to Scout's childhood, persuaded me to write a novel [what became To Kill a Mockingbird] from the point of view of the young Scout. I was a first-time writer, so I did as I was told. I hadn't realized it [the original book] had survived, so was surprised and delighted when my dear friend and lawyer Tonja Carter discovered it. After much thought and hesitation, I shared it with a handful of people I trust and was pleased to hear that they considered it worthy of publication. I am humbled and amazed that this will now be published after all these years."

"Scout [Jean Louise Finch] has returned to Maycomb from New York to visit her father, Atticus," the publisher's announcement reads in the article. "She is forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand her father's attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood."

According to the article, "Lee's publisher said the author is unlikely to do any publicity for the book. She has rarely spoken to the media since the 1960s, when she told one reporter that she wanted to 'to leave some record of small-town, middle-class Southern life.' Until now, To Kill a Mockingbird had been the sole fulfillment of that goal."

"This is a remarkable literary event," Harper publisher Jonathan Burnham said in a statement in the article. "The existence of Go Set a Watchman was unknown until recently, and its discovery is an extraordinary gift to the many readers and fans of To Kill a Mockingbird. Reading in many ways like a sequel to Harper Lee's classic novel, it is a compelling and ultimately moving narrative about a father and a daughter's relationship, and the life of a small Alabama town living through the racial tensions of the 1950s."

The new book, the article said, "also will be available in an electronic edition. Lee has openly started her preference for paper, but surprised fans last year by agreeing to allow Mockingbird to be released as an e-book."

Read the full story and comment below. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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