Monday, May 27, 2013

Reading Journal: To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee

Book Description:
The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it, To Kill A Mockingbird became both an instant bestseller and a critical success when it was first published in 1960. It went on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and was later made into an Academy Award-winning film, also a classic.  
Compassionate, dramatic, and deeply moving, To Kill A Mockingbird takes readers to the roots of human behavior - to innocence and experience, kindness and cruelty, love and hatred, humor and pathos. Now with over 18 million copies in print and translated into forty languages, this regional story by a young Alabama woman claims universal appeal. Harper Lee always considered her book to be a simple love story. Today it is regarded as a masterpiece of American literature.
My thoughts:
I don't know what thoughts I can add to such a book as To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee that hasn't already been said, but I found it left quite a different impression on my than what I though it would.

My favorite character was Scout, though you can't help but admire and apprecite Atticus. I really loved how Scout viewed the world. There were no gray areas. It was all black and white.

She saw through every one's prejudice whether it had was between the black and the whites or if it was just between different families in the town. And when it is was all said and done, I really think that was the author's intent. Yes, she used the prejudice between the blacks and the whites as her theme, but underneath there was that sly poking and prodding at all the different prejudices that every one in the community had.

I think it can be summed up best by Jesus words from Matthew 7:1-5:
Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
Yes, this is a tough story to read. Yes, it deals with unsavory topics or let's just call it what is is--sin . And yes, it even had a few "cuss" words in it.  It shows human beings at their worst and at their best. As long as there are humans beings in this world there will be prejudices; it is human nature--differences scare people. And this is what made me think long and hard about what scares me at times and I asked myself, "Am I careful about what I say or do when I'm faced with these differences, especially as a Christian?" along with, "What am I portraying to my children?" Ouch!

I know--not quite what you were expecting was it, but there you have it.

Stay tuned. Tomorrow for Tuesday Teaser I'm going to share my favorite line of the book.


  1. I only read this book for the first time within the last year or two. Not sure how I haven't read it before but I loved it! Nice review!

  2. I love this book so much! I read a biography of Harper Lee recently that was very insightful, too.

  3. This is on my TBR list for this year. Thanks for whetting my appetite.

  4. What a masterpiece...easily in my top 5 all time. I enjoyed your review.
    And a Patrick McManus of the first I've encountered besides my family (and I introduced him to them).
    My review ot TKAM:



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