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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?

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48 Comments Post a comment
  1. Yeah, I’ll read it, but I’m waiting until the initial craze is over. Just a little nervous!

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  2. Ana #

    I will… I think because of the same reasons I read 50 Shades of Grey: to have my own opinion about the book, so I could discuss with others and having what to say

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    July 20, 2015
  3. I really don’t want to read it. I feel like it might ruin one of my all time favorite books and characters too much. But I am sure, just like you, that my curiosity will eventually get the better of me.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  4. Brandon #

    I’ll be reading it. The rumors I’ve heard about it have piqued my curiosity, and I want to form my own opinion.

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    July 20, 2015
  5. Well, I’m reading To Kill a Mockingbird which I’ve never read. I was about 13 when it was published so it wasn’t on any school reading list. I remember catching part of the movie on TV at some point, but don’t remember too much about it. When I finish it, I’ll read Watchman. Since it was written first, I think both need to be read to have the complete story, but I’m doing it in chronological order rather than the order written. Should finish Mockingbird today.

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    July 20, 2015
  6. I just finished it. I didn’t want to read it because of the issues surrounding her ability to truly consent to it being published, but for the sake of our book blog, I figured it was important to read. I found it rather interesting to read the book that had the framework for what later became TKAM. TKAM is much better but it was fascinating to see how her ideas developed.

    Liked by 2 people

    July 20, 2015
  7. I will read it (and already added it to my TBR list). Mostly because I’m curious about the prequel and loved To Kill a Mockingbird.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  8. Yes! Just finished it, and don’t worry everyone – it’s really really good! My review (relatively non spoilery if you’ve been reading the news!) here: https://murderundergroundbrokethecamel.wordpress.com/2015/07/20/go-set-a-watchman/

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    July 20, 2015
  9. I have it sitting on the shelf, but I’m a little hesitant to pick it up. I want to be in the right frame of mind — to openly accept it as what it was and when it was written. I think to judge it beforehand is unfair to the book and Harper Lee. Plus I am keeping in mind that it will reflect the time it was written in.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  10. Who knows – I might read it at some point in the future, well after the hype dies down.

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    July 20, 2015
  11. I’ve read and reviewed it, and while I didn’t care for it, I still think it’s worthwhile reading it. Just keep in mind it’s an unedited manuscript.

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    July 20, 2015
  12. I can’t not read it.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  13. mendramarie #

    I don’t want to read it, at least not for a while. There are just too many ethical questions around both its publication and its previous suppression for me to feel comfortable with joining the furor. Maybe after everything calms down, I will change my mind.

    It’s certainly going to be interesting from a literary criticism perspective, though – to see how her style changed, the role of editing, and so on. From an entertainment perspective, if I do ever read it, I will have to approach it as either an alternate universe or an entirely different group of characters that happens to be in the same setting. I’ve never felt that TKAM needs a sequel – or a prequel, for that matter. If I put it in the same “world” as TKAM, Watchman is likely to suffer in comparison just because I will go in seeing it as unnecessary.

    Liked by 2 people

    July 20, 2015
  14. I’ll most likely read Go Set A Watchman in a year or two. Honestly, I wasn’t that impressed with Mockingbird, so I’m not exactly running out to read Watchman.

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    July 20, 2015
  15. It’s a tough call! But curiosity will definitely win out this time!

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    July 20, 2015
  16. No I don’t want to read it.

    I agree with what you said in your post, it’s not a sequel or a ‘new’ idea, it’s simply the draft that led Harper Lee to write To Kill a Mockingbird.

    We’ve already grown up with TKAM and fallen in love with the characters. I can’t risk losing them!

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
    • I was worried – but I would heartily recommend it even to those who love Mockingbird, honestly, it’s so good – and addresses the issues you’re talking about head on. My review is here – it’s not that spoilery, if you’ve been reading the news, and it talks about why I loved it: https://murderundergroundbrokethecamel.wordpress.com/

      Like

      July 20, 2015
      • It’s not really because I love TKAM so much (though I do) it’s more because I love Atticus so much! A character that three generations of my family all love and talk about. I just don’t think it’s worth tarnishing!

        Thanks for your review but I’m pretty certain I don’t want to read this 🙂

        I get very attached to characters in books or film, it’s not worth it for me, personally. Thank you though!!!

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2015
  17. Maybe I would read these two books of Lee. I haven’t read the first but seeing the engaging reaction of those who read it, I am guessing they are good masterpieces.

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  18. I finished this book and while I’m glad I read it, my opinion is it’s not for the casual reader. For those who think that gorgeous novels come bursting from authors with no effort, Go Set a Watchman is pure evidence that even the greats have to labor over their work. It’s basically a blueprint, a rough draft of sorts, for To Kill a Mockingbird. The book is not a great book, but it’s a great education for anyone who needs proof that you must work hard to achieve what you want. (I wrote a much longer review of it on blog.)

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  19. carolinesofiya #

    I told myself for the longest time that I wouldn’t read it. My reasons were a combination of all of the controversy surrounding it and the fact that I didn’t want to ruin my extremely positive perception of To Kill a Mockingbird. But, every time I walked by it in the bookstore or saw it on Amazon, I knew that no matter what, it was a book that I HAD to read. So, I finally cracked, and I bought it–trying to go into reading it with an open mind.

    Liked by 2 people

    July 20, 2015
  20. I think I would read it, something about it makes is seen adventurous and exciting. I do wonder where you could purchase it, could anyone give me that information

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  21. Wow, this is exciting news! I look forward to reading it!

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  22. No. TKAMB is a favourite of mine but I feel no compulsion to read this one. So many books, so little time. As a literary exercise? Interesting. At my age I just want to enjoy the books I read. The reviews suggest there are better works out there.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  23. I received my copy of GSAWM today so yes – I am planning to read it. I might like it, I might not. But I don’t think my love for TKAM is so weak that it can be ruined by GSAWM.

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    July 20, 2015
  24. I’m halfway through the book already. I too think To Kill a Mockingbird is perfect (and Go Set a Watchman isn’t), but still, it’s interesting to see how Lee grew as a writer and how the character and the story evolved in her mind. Plus, Harper Lee releasing a new book is probably the biggest literary news of the century thus far: I wouldn’t be a proper book blogger if I didn’t get in on it!

    Liked by 2 people

    July 20, 2015
  25. I finished it this past Thursday and am still in the process of collecting my thoughts. I was disappointed, but not at all surprised given the reviews I read beforehand. It’s no wonder Harper Lee’s editor passed up on it the first time, though its potential is clear.

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  26. I haven’t read To Kill a Mockingbird (don’t judge I live in Belgium 😂) but I’m planning to and then maybe i’ll read Go Set a Watchman

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  27. J.E. Fountain #

    I’m with Ray…I cannot – not read it. I am a bit concerned it won’t live up to the genius of TKAM, but if it does come short, it won’t diminish TKAM a bit. I may not get to it this year though due to a reading goal I set for the year.

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  28. Kat #

    I have ordered it, so I’ll be reading it soon. It’s hard to resist, though I am rather put off by the thought that Lee is potentially being taken advantage of. But I’m weak! And so!

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  29. TKAM is one of my all time favorite books and Harper Lee is a fantastic writer. Based off that I have decided that I am going to read Watchman. I refuse to let it have any impact on how I feel about TKAM. I am treating them as two separate books even though the stories are really the same. HOWEVER because of the controversy surround the idea that Lee may have been taken advantage of in order to have this novel publish I am boycotting purchasing the book. I am patiently waiting in line for it to be available at my local library.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2015
  30. I’ll be reading it for sure! Who would pass up an opportunity to read “lost” words written by one of the best authors of all time, regardless of political or personal concern?

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  31. I am planning on reading it! I was geeked to get the book and I am not sure if it is next on my list or second to next! Very excited! I have heard bad reviews.

    Like

    July 20, 2015
  32. Reblogged this on oshriradhekrishnabole.

    Like

    July 21, 2015
  33. I just can’t read it. To kill a mockingbird is my favourite book and I don’t want to spoil that.

    Like

    July 21, 2015
  34. I read it and I’m glad I did. It’s not perfection, but it’s a good honest effort by Lee, whenever she wrote it. It’s a mix of good and bad . There are flashes of brilliant writing, followed by some drab, needlessly long descriptions. The characters have moved around, and the ones we love the most are either gone, or very different from how we remember them in TKAMB. But there’s a new hero in the book ( to make up for the fall of Atticus I guess ).

    As for the heartbreak, which every editorial, article and opinion piece is talking about – it’s very real ! You feel Scout’s pain when she makes some distasteful discoveries about her family. If a book can make you feel like that, it’s worth a read.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 21, 2015
  35. I read it the day it came out. Read the whole thing in one day. I’m glad I read it, but I’m one of those people who thinks it shouldn’t have been published. But it was, so moving on…

    Like

    July 21, 2015
  36. I haven’t even read To Kill a Mockingbird (I did Catcher in the Rye at GCSE instead) so I’ll definitely need to read that and then Go Set a Watchman. Harper Lee is such a classic novelist anything by her has to be read, especially as I’m now majoring in English Literature.

    Like

    July 21, 2015
  37. I’m definitely reading it for some of the reasons you mentioned. Even if it is a “shitty first draft” as Anne Lamott would say, it may be the only other book by Harper Lee we ever get to read.
    I blogged about other reasons I want to read it here: http://www.babystepstowriting.com

    Like

    July 22, 2015
  38. Oui, with you.

    Like

    July 24, 2015
  39. To Kill A Mockingbird is a special book to me. It’s kind of like, you find a book you admire and you don’t want its memory tarnished in any way. So, I am not sure. ❤

    Like

    July 29, 2015
  40. I will not read it. I already feel terrible about what I have read concerning Atticus and racism. Atticus is monumentally a symbol of fatherhood to me. I feel very strongly about this character and get emotional just thinking of him. I’ll stay far away from this one because, in this case, the character overrides the author for me. I would not often think this way, but it is what it is.

    Like

    August 5, 2015
  41. I will read it certain! how can we ignore a work like this …))

    Like

    August 14, 2015

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