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This 12-Year-Old Boy Needs Books. Let’s Send Him Some.

Here’s your heartwarming story for the day.

Last week, a mailman in Utah was delivering mail to the home of a 12-year-old boy, Mathew Flores. The kid was reading junk mail and asked the mailman if he had any extra.

When the mailman, Ron Lynch, asked Flores why he was reading junk mail, the boy told him that he didn’t have any books. For fun, he reads newspapers and mail.

Flores’ family doesn’t have a car, and he can’t afford the bus pass to go to the library. So, no books.

“He didn’t want electronics. He didn’t want to sit in front of the TV playing games all day. This kid just wanted to read,” Lynch said.

So, like any good trustworthy mailman, Lynch did something about it.

He posted a photo of the boy on Facebook, with a description of the situation. The post went viral on social media and found its way to Reddit.  Read more

A Little Reminder That Harper Lee Was An Incredible Writer

SPOILERS BELOW!

If you ever doubted that Harper Lee could write, if you ever bit on the rumor that, perhaps, Truman Capote had secretly written To Kill A Mockingbird (explaining why Lee never wrote again), then Go Set A Watchman should erase those doubts.

As we’ve talked about before, Lee wrote Watchman years before Mockingbird. It was Lee’s editor who helped turn the Watchman novel into the classic that eventually became To Kill A Mockingbird. So, when you read Go Set A Watchman, you’re actually reading Mockingbird‘s first draft. Fascinating, isn’t it?

Lee’s editor, Tay Hohoff, saw something in Lee. She realized the type of writing Harper Lee was capable of, and she helped draw that out of her.

If you’re familiar with Watchman‘s story, then you know it’s rather controversial. Atticus Finch has become a racist old man. Scout, who has recently returned to Maycomb from New York City, is shocked to find Atticus and her boyfriend, Hank Clinton, at an organized “we hate black people” meeting at the courthouse.

Jean Louise (Scout) is stunned.  Read more

My Thoughts On The First 100 Pages Of Go Set A Watchman

SPOILERS BELOW.

Here are just a few of my thoughts about what I’ve read so far. Read more

Rest In Peace, E.L. Doctorow

I rarely break my blogging schedule, but today’s an exception.

Last night, E.L. Doctorow died at the age of 84. According to his son, he passed away because of complications from lung cancer.

As I’ve read through the 101 Books, I’ve noticed how rare it is to actually have a living author on the list. Doctorow, who most famously wrote Ragtime and Billy Bathgate, was one of the few. Since I created the blog almost five years ago, I only recall one other author on the list passing away–that’s Doris Lessing, who wrote The Golden NotebookRead more

The Editor Behind To Kill A Mockingbird

The recent release of Go Set A Watchman is an interesting case study in the development of a classic novel.

With the novel’s publication last week, the New York Times published an interesting behind-the-scenes look at the process that transformed Go Set A Watchman into To Kill A Mockingbird several years later. Read more

Will You Read The New Harper Lee Novel?

I made this novel such a priority to read that I paused the Time list in order to read it.

I figure this might be the only other novel I’ll ever read from Harper Lee, so I don’t want to miss this opportunity.

But I understand why some people refuse to read Go Set A WatchmanTo Kill A Mockingbird was perfection…why mess with perfection? And was Harper Lee taken advantage of in order to get this novel published? And if it’s not a true sequel–Watchman was originally the first draft of TKAM–then what’s the point in reading it anyway?

I get all that. But let’s just say curiosity is getting the better of me on this one. So, as you know, I’ll be reading Go Set A Watchman and blogging about it–just as if it was another novel on the list.

But I want to know about you guys. Will you be reading Go Set A Watchman? Why or why not?

Next Up: Go Set A Watchman

Wait a minute…what?

Yes, that’s Harper Lee’s newest novel released two days ago.

No, it’s obviously not on the list of All-Time novels released in 2005.

Yes, I’ll be temporarily pushing the pause button on reading the Time list to focus on Go Set a Watchman.

Why? Read more

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