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Scout, Atticus, and Boo: A Celebration of Fifty Years of To Kill a Mockingbird

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  1,070 Ratings  ·  200 Reviews
To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Harper Lee’s beloved classic To Kill a Mockingbird, filmmaker Mary Murphy has interviewed prominent figures—including Oprah, Anna Quindlen, and Tom Brokaw—on how the book has impacted their lives. These interviews are compiled in Scout, Atticus, and Boo, the perfect companion to one of the most important American books of the 20th Cen ...more
ebook, 256 pages
Published June 8th 2010 by HarperCollins e-books (first published 2010)
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Lisa Vegan
Jul 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all readers who liked the book To Kill a Mockingbird and have feelings & thoughts about it
Recommended to Lisa by: Joy
To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my very favorite all time books. My copy is so tattered it’s almost unreadable (so I did buy the 50th anniversary edition for actual further readings.) My copy is a paperback copy that was originally my mother’s; its cover price was 60¢. It’s one of only 4 books I’ve read at least 100 times; I read it for the first time when I was 12. I don’t know the book verbatim, but I know many passages by heart. I feel as though I have much of the book memorized. (The movie c ...more
Larry Bassett
Of the 1.4 million GR ratings of To Kill a Mockingbird, one percent didn’t like the book, gave it one star! Unbelievable, right? Don’t look for interviews in this book from any of those people. Twenty-six people plus the author tell the stories of their connections to and recollections of the author, the book and the movie. Everybody has their story about To Kill a Mockingbird. Never was heard a discouraging word, and the skies were not cloudy all day.

Although I have never read a fan magazine, t
Jun 14, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Quick read that consists of a series of interviews by famous authors and personalities about To Kill a Mockingbird. (Um, the authors and personalities aren't about to kill a mockingbird, they are merely going to discuss the book of that name. This is why I am not a great writer.) There were several points that different people brought up that I hadn't considered. I loved the book, that's why I have felt compelled to read everything about this book. And maybe I'm burning out. I also got the docum ...more
Dec 26, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2010
When I was growing up, we received a book every quarter from Reader's Digest Condensed Books. For those of you too young to remember these treasures, a Readers Digest Condensed Book contained abridged versions of 4-5 recent releases and bestsellers. When I was about 8 years old, in third grade, I picked up one of these volumes that contained To Kill a Mockingbird. That story grabbed me and taught me about race, justice, and acceptance. I saw the world completely through Scout's eyes. Being the s ...more
Sep 15, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was mostly a "meh" book for me. I went in to this book thinking it was a series of essays about To Kill a Mockingbird and its effects on society. In reality the book is more like a series of love letters to To Kill a Mockingbird that all say more or less the same thing. "Harper Lee was brave;" "it's obvious Truman Capote had no part in writing it;" "I wish there were more books by Harper Lee" etc

I did think the author that suggested Harper Lee wasn't brave because white writers should
Dec 26, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Strange organization -- first section doesn't seem to be ordered in any way, and second section seems like transcripts of interviews the author did with different people (transcripts that also don't seem to follow any method of organization -- it's difficult to read disjointed paragraphs! I'm really wondering if anyone edited this book -- I've really never seen such disconnected paragraphs!).

This book is not what I thought it would be: I thought it would be a collection of the author's thoughts
Linda Lipko
Feb 27, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Writing a negative review regarding a book about my favorite book seems blasphemous. Yet, here I go:

The author certainly has a host of credentials including the fact that she was a producer at CBS News, where she won six Emmy awards. Still, because of the poor writing and editing, while reading this book I was drawn away from the story. Just when I found an interesting tidbit, wham....I was frustrated by redundancy.

In honor of the 50th anniversary of To Kill a Mockingbird, the author interviewed
Jun 08, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone!
Sounds like a must for Mockingbird fans! Later... and it is!

I first read To Kill a Mockingbird when I was in junior high and I still have the paperback copy I bought then which cost a whopping 95 cents! It's pages are very yellow so when I saw the 40th anniv. edition last year (in a beautiful hard-cover edition) I snapped it up.

Scout, Atticus & Boo made me want to read Mockingbird again. It's full of lovely essays from great writers and journalists including Wally Lamb, Scott Turow, James P
This book had some interesting parts, however, overall it was a disappointment. Murphy give away everything that her "interviewies" say almost quote by quote before one gets to the interviews themselves. The first portion of the book mirrors the second almost verbatim. I also did not find the people that she interviewed overall very interesting. I loved the interview with Mary Badham, and Rick Bragg, but the rest were for the most part, with some exceptions, very predictable. There is nothing ne ...more
Mauoijenn ~ *Mouthy Jenn* ~
Interesting stuff.
Good book to read after you read TKAM!
Jul 27, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
By coincidence in the same week of the release of "Go Set a Watchman" (and hysteria surrounding) I spotted this paperback on the upper shelf of a bookcase in an assisted living community outside of Eugene, Oregon while visiting my husband's father. I was conflicted about the publication of Harper Lee's earlier, apparently set-aside novel and had decided (not having ignored leaked information mind you) that I didn't want to spoil the work that was meant to be published by reading something she'd ...more
Aug 01, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
The author created both a documentary and a book compiling the thoughts of authors, teachers and celebrities about the wonderful classic novel, To Kill a Mockingbird. She included everyone from Oprah to Harper Lee’s own sister to the actress who played Scout in the movie. The book chronicles people’s favorite scenes, their questions, their first experience reading it and the reasons why they love it.

People all over the world have been touched by the book because of the issues it addresses and t
I first encountered this book when I was in Monroeville, Alabama, in July 2010 for the town's celebration of TKAM's 50th anniversary. I was attending a lecture at the local community college, and this book was at my table. I flipped through it and immediately read the interviews by Anna Quindlen and Oprah Winfrey. The idea seemed interesting--lots of interesting people's responses to TKAM--plus a little history on the novel as well.

For my birthday in September 2010, I received this book. I didn'
Gary Anderson
Nov 21, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you don't already love To Kill a Mockingbird, you probably wouldn't pick up this book anyway. But if To Kill a Mockingbird is your book, and it is mine, then this tribute is a great read.

The contributors include a mix of authors, artists, thinkers, celebrities, and residents of Monroeville, Alabama. The book is nicely edited in that it shuffles these various perspectives so that if we read it in order, we move easily among these insights and emerge with a satisfying blend of ways to consider
Leslie Reinhart
Jan 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Let me start by saying I absoloutely loved this book. When presented with the question in a class a few years ago asking, "If the world today were like Farenheit 41 and you could opt to rebel and memorize one book to save for future societies, what would it be?" Without hesitation, or delay, my answer was obvious, To Kill a Mockingbird. Each year I read this book at least four times as I teach it to three classes and every year I love it more. In honor of the 50th anniversary this book was publi ...more
Aug 30, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, 2010
I guess it’s not surprising that I was disappointed in this book. Mary McDonagh Murphy collected reflections by numerous people on what they thought of To Kill a Mockingbird to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the book’s publication. She talked about show much she liked the book; she’s read it three times.

Three times!!!! I had read it that often by the time I was 12. I’ve read it hundreds of times by this point. It’s one of the two books with which I have a relationship (the other is The Chosen
Jun 14, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This books is pointless. I mean, who doesn't love To Kill a Mockingbird, but I really don't think this book had much of anything to say at all. The first section is just the author/editor pulling quotes from the interviews you're going to read in the second half. And the interviews are, I think, just transcripts, which means they're written like people speak - kind of disorganized, and not very eloquent. And mostly they're just like, "Oh, boy, I loved this book/movie. Scout was fun. It made me t ...more
Jul 12, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD
The first third of the book is an interesting historical essay about the writing & publishing of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD (which is 50 years old this year) and the filming of the movie. It quotes liberally from the rest of the book, a series of interview transcripts done for a documentary film with a wide variety of people connected to Harper Lee.

The essay is very interesting - but it harvests the best bits (for the most part) from the remaining interviews, which makes them less appealing. The
Nov 07, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
so this book wasn't really all that great. i didn't even finish it because it was due back at the library and i didn't think it was worth renewing. basically what it made me realize is that i don't really care why other people love "to kill mockingbird." all i really care about is why i love it . and while it was kind of interesting to hear from the people who actually knew harper lee, in the end i found the book a bit repetitive and (dare i say) slightly boring.
Lorraine Montgomery
This is a book of interviews conducted across the spectrum of race, gender, geographical location, occupation, and age, with people who have one thing in common — To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee meant something profound to them personally, as well as on a social and literary level.

Mary McDonagh Murphy tells us that the germ of this project came one day while sitting on her back porch rereading Mockingbird for the third time. It is a book to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the publication o
May 23, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting at first. Got repetitive after awhile. Still loved seeing the love for TKAM though! This book is dated. All of the interviews say that that Harper Lee never wrote another book. Even though the back cover references Watchman....
Jul 31, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A loving homage to TKAM, but I wonder how the interviewees might change their responses after reading Go Set a Watchman.
Aug 06, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was intrigued by this book because I do love To Kill A Mockingbird. I was a little disappointed in the book though. I enjoyed some of the memoirs and the insights into the life of Nelle Harper Lee that were shared by those who contributed to the book.

The writing style, though, was kind of rough. I know the people were all interviewed in person, but I think I was still kind of expecting the chapters to be more essay-like. Not so. The chapters were written in prose, and since the text did not i
Irene McHugh
Jul 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I saw the documentary Hey, Boo at the Tucson art house theater. The programming director frequently introduces the films and during his intro for this one, he mentioned this book, which was published during To Kill a Mockingbird's 50th anniversary year. This book consists of an introduction on Harper Lee and the impact of her novel with 26 interviews of people giving their perspective on her novel and the impact it had on their lives. The documentary takes pieces of this book and weaves them int ...more
Aug 24, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Is essays and interviews based on a PBS documentary of the same name by the same author. Wally Lamb writes: “For a lot of kids, it’s the voice of Scout. It’s certainly not the adult voice of Jean Louise Finch. It’s Scout’s voice.” James McBride writes: “Honesty and truth last. My initial response was more or less the same as how I read it now professionally. The writer was very forthright and spoke with great clarity about issues that I think we have a hard time discussing even today. Later, whe ...more
Oct 12, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed most the thinking about Mockingbird while I read what other people thought of it. I guess I was not a Scout person - I mean, I liked Scout, but never thought of her as the focus of the book, the main character...but did like thinking of which was my favorite character. I find I don't have a favorite of all times - usually its who I connect with whenever I read the book. Sometimes I need Calpurnia or Atticus most. Other times, I need Jem, or Miss Maudie or even Uncle Jack. If required t ...more
Aug 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As of this writing, a signed, first-edition of arguably the greatest American novel of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird, is going for $565.00 to $1,800.00 on Ebay. The fact that signed copies are so incredibly rare is not the only reason. Harper Lee wrote one novel in her lifetime, and chances are, she will not be writing another one. In this novel, she said what she needed to say, then stopped publishing. Some would question why she did not write another. Well, if you were the author of To Kill ...more
Nov 21, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: To Kill a Mockingbird fans
Shelves: essays
This book of essays from noted figures in media, including Rick Bragg, Oprah Winfrey, Scott Turow and many, many others, tells us of the impact of Harper Lee's 1960 classic in the era in which it was released and its continuing relevance today.

What is interesting is that there are so many people interviewed for this book, but they all have their very different reasons for admiring To Kill a Mockingbird, and it means different things to each of them. To Anna Quindlen and Oprah Winfrey, it's all
Jul 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: booksiveread
Sunday, 31 July 2011

Scout, Atticus and Boo
Just finished reading this book, published in 2010 on the occasion of celebrating 50 years ofTO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD.

This book is a collection of reflections of numerous folks, Mary Badham, Andrew Young, Alice Finch Lee to name only a few, on the first adult book that many of us remember reading, a book the millions of "us" have in common.
It is only 217 pages yet full of remembrances that many of we "Southren" kids, raised in the South, including those of
Aug 29, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: current-lit
To Kill a Mockingbird is my favorite book and it celebrated its 50th anniversary this July. This book is a collection of interviews from various celebrities and authors about TKAM's influence on American culture, and also some background on author Harper Lee/how the book was written.

I read a biography of Harper Lee a few years ago which was very through and detailed so there wasn't much in the beginning section of this book that I didn't already know. But it was still fun to read about how much
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Mary McDonagh Murphy is an independent film and television writer/producer whose current projects include a documentary about the novel To Kill a Mockingbird. Her most recent book is Scout, Atticus, and Boo: A Celebration of Fifty Years of To Kill a Mockingbird. She has also recently produced Cry for Help, a PBS program."
More about Mary McDonagh Murphy...
“Lizzie Skurnick, who blogs about young adult books for and is the author of Shelf Discovery: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading, and David Kipen, former director of literature for the National Endowment for the Arts and supervisor of the NEA’s Big Read program, which includes To Kill a Mockingbird.” 0 likes
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