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About the Book

A historic literary event: the publication of a newly discovered novel, the earliest known work from Harper Lee, the beloved, bestselling author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning classic, To Kill a Mockingbird.

Originally written in the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman was the novel Harper Lee first submitted to her publishers before To Kill a Mockingbird. Assumed to have been lost, the manuscript was discovered in late 2014.

Go Set a Watchman features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some twenty years later. Returning home to Maycomb to visit her father, Jean Louise Finch—Scout—struggles with issues both personal and political, involving Atticus, society, and the small Alabama town that shaped her.

Exploring how the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird are adjusting to the turbulent events transforming mid-1950s America, Go Set a Watchman casts a fascinating new light on Harper Lee’s enduring classic. Moving, funny and compelling, it stands as a magnificent novel in its own right.

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Critical Praise

Go Set a Watchman is such an important book, perhaps the most important novel on race to come out of the white South in decades… —New York Times Opinion Pages: Taking Note

Watchman is compelling in its timeliness.” —Washington Post

Go Set a Watchman provides valuable insight into the generous, complex mind of one of America’s most important authors.” —USA Today

“Harper Lee’s second novel sheds more light on our world than its predecessor did.” —Time

“[Go Set a Watchman] contains the familiar pleasures of Ms. Lee’s writing- the easy, drawling rhythms, the flashes of insouciant humor, the love of anecdote.” —Wall Street Journal

“…the voice we came to know so well in To Kill a Mockingbird - funny, ornery, rulebreaking - is right here in Go Set a Watchman, too, as exasperating and captivating as ever.” —Chicago Tribune

“Don’t let ‘Go Set a Watchman’ change the way you think about Atticus Finch…the hard truth is that a man such as Atticus, born barely a decade after Reconstruction to a family of Southern gentry, would have had a complicated and tortuous history with race.” —Los Angeles Times

“A significant aspect of this novel is that it asks us to see Atticus now not merely as a hero, a god, but as a flesh-and-blood man with shortcomings and moral failing, enabling us to see ourselves for all our complexities and contradictions.” —Washington Post

“The success of Go Set a Watchman... lies both in its depiction of Jean Louise reckoning with her father’s beliefs, and in the manner by which it integrates those beliefs into the Atticus we know.” —Time

Go Set a Watchman’s greatest asset may be its role in sparking frank discussion about America’s woeful track record when it comes to racial equality.” —San Francisco Chronicle

Go Set a Watchman comes to us at exactly the right moment. All important works of art do. They come when we don’t know how much we need them.” —Chicago Tribune

“What makes Go Set a Watchman memorable is its sophisticated and even prescient view of the long march for racial justice. Remarkably, a novel written that long ago has a lot to say about our current struggles with race and inequality.” —Chicago Tribune

“[Go Set a Watchman] captures some of the same small-town Southern humor and preoccupation with America’s great struggle: race.” —Columbus Dispatch

Go Set a Watchman’s gorgeous opening is better than we could have expected.” —Vanity Fair

Go Set a Watchman is more complex than Harper Lee’s original classic. A satisfying novel… it is, in most respects, a new work, and a pleasure, revelation and genuine literary event.” —The Guardian

“Lee’s ability with description is evident… with long sentences beautifully rendered and evoking a world long lost to history, but welcoming all the same.” —CNN.com

“A coming-of-age novel in which Scout becomes her own woman…Go Set a Watchman’s voice is beguiling and distinctive, and reminiscent of Mockingbird. (It) can’t be dismissed as literary scraps from Lee’s imagination. It has too much integrity for that.” —The Independent

“Atticus’ complexity makes Go Set a Watchman worth reading. With Mockingbird, Harper Lee made us question what we know and who we think we are. Go Set a Watchman continues in this noble literary tradition.” —New York Post

“A deftly written tale… there’s something undeniably comforting and familiar about sinking into Lee’s prose once again.” —People

“One overarching theme that many critics have zeroed in on is that there is a lot to learn from the novel, as both a writer and a reader.” —Vulture

“As Faulkner said, the only good stories are the ones about the human heart in conflict with itself. And that’s a pretty good summation of Go Set a Watchman.” —Daily Beast

Go Set a Watchman offers a rich and complex story… To make the novel about pinning the right label on Atticus is to miss the point.” —Bloomberg View

“[Go Set a Watchman is a] brilliant book that ruthlessly examines race relations —Denver Post

“In this powerful newly published story about the Finch family, Lee presents a wider window into the white Southern heart, and tells us it is finally time for us all to shatter the false gods of the past and be free.” —NPR's "Code Switch"

“[Go Set a Watchman is] filled with the evocative language, realistic dialogue and sense of place that partially explains what made Mockingbird so beloved.” —Buffalo News

Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780062409850
  • ISBN 10: 0062409859
  • Imprint: Harper
  • On Sale: 07/14/2015
  • Pages: 288
  • List Price: 34.99 CAD
  • BISAC1: FICTION / Literary
  • BISAC2: FICTION / General
  • BISAC3: FICTION / Classics

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