Thursday

Book review: To Kill a Mockingbird


To Kill a Mockingbird- Harper Lee
I have to admit, after my disappointing experience with Catcher in the Rye, I wasn't expecting great things from this book. I know it's a classic, I know it's a book that everyone should read at some point in their life, but the same is true of Catcher in the Rye and I hated it! 

Perhaps it's my own fault that I was underwhelmed to begin with. Although I also felt misled by the blurb, which put a lot of emphasis on one particular event in the novel. The story tells the tale of a family in 1930s Alabama through the narration of 8 year old Scout Finch. Her father, Atticus, is the town's resident lawyer and battles to change the small town's prejudiced opinions. Essentially, it's a story of growing up in a small town, of defending what's right and coping with changing loved ones.
I found the novel started slow. For at least the first half, I found it difficult to understand where it was going. There's a lot of foundation-building and not a huge amount of substance. Finally, though, when Atticus defends a black man in court, the pace picks up and the earlier assertions begin to click into place.

Scout is an endearing narrator. Although young, she is wise and understands more than those around her give her credit for. Her morals are sound and she is determined to fight for what's right, regardless of the challenges. Her relationship with her older brother Jem is adorable. Perhaps because, for the first 12 years of my life (minus the first 15 months), I grew up with one brother, I could relate to their close friendship. It's a very true representation of two children growing up in a single-parent family. 
The sweet overtones of the story are darkened by the themes of prejudice and isolation, although Scout uses naive humour to prevent the tale becoming morose. It holds an important message: Not to judge anyone, regardless of how they may appear. 

10 comments :

  1. I really loved this book, great review. I think Scout does cast such an interesting perspective on the events as someone innocent :)

    Lauren xx

    covershootbeauty.blogspot.com

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  2. I really need to read this book. I started reading it a high school but never finished it due to its lack of pace, maybe its time to give it another go. I couldn't get into Catcher and the Rye either, I didn't find the narrator very likeable.
    Jodie xx

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    1. Definitely give it a go. I didn't like the narrator of Catcher in the Rye either.

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  3. I really enjoyed this. Atticus is one of my favourite characters. I find that reading The Catcher In The Rye depends on your mood. Sometimes I read it and I love Holden and sometimes I read it and I think he's a super massive dick head.
    Hayley
    Water Painted Dreams xxx

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    1. Haha I think maybe it's because I'm so much older than him. Perhaps when I was 17, I would have related to him more.

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  4. I hated Catcher in the Rye too! To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my favourites though - I can read it again and again and still find more to love. It's also worth watching the film (Gregory Peck as Atticus!) - they really do the book justice.

    www.houseofblog.co.uk

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    1. I haven't seen the film. I'll have to find a copy!

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  5. I had to study this at school but I'd like to read it again. I also disliked the Catcher in the Rye - Holden was a massive douche and I just didn't really care about what he thought or did. x

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    1. Haha that's exactly how I felt about him!

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