'Shoot all the Bluejays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a Mockingbird.' Lawyer Atticus Finch gives this advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee's classic novel - a black man charged with the rape of a white girl.
Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with exuberant humour the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s.
The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina of one man's struggle for justice.
But the weight of history will only tolerate so much...A benchmark of classic American literature, To Kill A Mockingbird approaches the highly sensitive topic of racism in 1930s America with humour, warmth and compassion, making it widely recognised as one of the best books of the twentieth century and in American literature.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 320 pages
- Publisher: Cornerstone
- Publication Date: 05/10/1989
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780099419785
Showing 1 - 5 of 22 reviews.
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Review by tejas
Definately worth all the praise it's got. Harper tells the story of the racial injustice in the small town of Maycomb in Alabama through the eyes of the 8-year old Scout Finch. Atticus Finch standing up for what he knows is right has to defend a black man accused of raping a white girl. Scout and her brother Jem soon come to the painful realization that justice does not always follow the truth. A classic not to be missed.
Review by tcarter
Rich, enveloping, and moving. Draws you in to this community with all its subtle dynamics and secrets. Exposes the roots of prejudice and discrimination of all kinds. Encourages uprightness, honour and steadfast justice in the face of popular disapproval. A call to arms.
Review by Greatrakes
I loved this book. It's books like this that make me glad I never took English Literature at school. I ended up hating almost every book I was ever made to study at school. I'm not surprised that this is Harper Lee's only novel, it doesn't really read like a novel, more like a fictionalised autobiography. Although the novel is, famously, about deep-seated racism in the Deep South, it is really about growing up (in my untrained opinion). The characters are, in the main, decent, old fashioned, community minded and inherently racist. What makes the book fascinating is its perfect demonstration of what subtle concepts good and evil are.By using children as her protagonists, Lee is able to show how complex human relations are. To the young children, the world around them is populated by good folk and bad folk, the bad ones are fabulous creations, Boo Radley and dying Mrs Dubose. As the children grow up and, especially as the drama of the trial unfolds, truths that seemed immutable crumble away, good men form a lynch mob, monsters become frightened and reluctant heroes and the world of childhood starts to dissipate.The book is also an evocative description of time and place, I felt as though I was there. Reading this book, I realised where Donna Tartt got her inspiration for The Little Friend, another favourite read of mine, the same sense of place, a similar pace, and even the same heroine type, a young girl, believing her world to be full of monsters.Atticus Finch is often held up as the epitome of a good man and a good father, a moral rock. That he may be, but I thought he was too good to be true, too perfect, hero worship by the author. I wouldn't want a parent like Atticus, a perfect parent is too much to live up to! I'd be proud if my daughter grew up to be Scout Finch, though.A wonderful book.
Review by firebird013
If you have not read this you have missed one of the greatest books of all time. Trueman Capote is the the real life exemplar of one of the children in the story - whom Harper Lee knew as a child.
Review by DubaiReader
I'm glad I read this.To Kill a Mockingbird is not a book I would have picked up were it not being read by my book group. I don't generally favour books about the deep south of America, written over 50 years ago. This, however, was definitely the exception. It was not only a coming-of-age novel narrated by the young Jean Louise (Scout) but it also painted a strong picture of race relations and racism at the time. This was particularly interesting following on from my most recent read - Barak Obama's Dreams From My Father, which was set about 20 years later and showed a gradual progression from Harper Lee's America through Obama's early years to the recent earth shattering election of a black president in US.In the light of current events, this book is an even more poinant read than before and I highly recommend it.
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