Mona's Reviews > To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
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's review
Jul 25, 2007

it was amazing
bookshelves: law, social-justice-human-rights, 20th-century-lit, historical-fiction, literature, united-states, favorites
Read in July, 2007

I read this book a long time ago, when I was ten years old. I remembered nothing from it except thinking it was really, really good. And here I am, thirteen years later. I picked it up again because I was curious about what my reaction would be to it now.

The book follows three years in the life of Scout Finch, her brother Jem, their father Atticus, and their fictional town of Maycomb, Alabama, in the era of the Great Depression. The first half of the novel focuses mainly on Scout and Jem's childhood - their friend Dill, their fixation on their neighbor "Boo" Radley, and their experiences at school. The second part of the book is marked both by the ongoing trial of a black man accused of raping a white woman, whom Atticus has been called to defend, and the repercussions this trial has on the children's eventual coming of age.

I loved this book. Both parts of the book are very well-done, and although each seems to be separate at first, Lee does a great job of weaving in themes from the first into the second. The children have very child-like perspectives. They do not seem adult beyond their years. Every character - particularly each of the Finches - is distinctive. I liked how Atticus shows depth. He is not heroic simply because of who he is defending as an attorney but his entire outlook on the case and its significance to his family and career. This book seems so simple, but it's about several things at once - racism, injustice, social status, innocence, accusation, and experience.

I feel like I had a million things I wanted to say about this book, but I can't remember half of what they were, mostly because the copy I had was from the library and I had to return it. Let me just say this: wow. And also, this is going to the top of my very short "must-buy" list. I may even buy two copies - one to highlight in, and one just to keep.
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Quotes Mona Liked

Harper Lee
“I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.
- Atticus Finch”
Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee
“They're certainly entitled to think that, and they're entitled to full respect for their opinions... but before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience.”
Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

Reading Progress

04/22/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Sunny I was 10 when I read it two years ago.

Felicity Flutter I had the same experience of reading this many years apart and felt I should have revisited it before. It is just a wonderful book definitely on my 'best reads' list.

Poppy Sinolinggo I was 14 when i picked this up and it was so long ago that i only remember bits and pieces of it. But I remembered taking my own time reading it as i did not want the book to end and i loved the characters so much. I am going to revisit it soon tofind out what is was that made my 14 y.o self fall in love with this book in the first place.

Chiodo1535 To Kill a Mockingbird, so far, is a pretty interesting novel. The setting of this book informs you on the customs and opinions of the people in that time period. In addition, throughout the book you learn what characters are mockingbirds. For example, Atticus, Boo Radley, and Tom are mockingbirds. They are people who don't cause harm to anyone but are talked about throughout the town. From this I think we learn who are the mockingbirds around us. In the end To Kill a Mockingbird is a exciting book and I can't wait to see what happens next.

Mercurycode I feel exactly the same way about this book. Having finished it today, I even cried. Not because there was anything sad to cry about, but because I could not believe the greatness of this story and how deeply it had touched me. Now I feel the need to buy 10 versions of this book all with a different cover and collect those as if they were a treasure to hold on to for life.

message 6: by Deirdre (new)

Deirdre Bermingham Excellent review. I cannot wait to get my hands on TKAMB. Its next on my list.

Noha VM Ik ben ook helemaal weg van hoe de auteur die verschillende thema's in een boek heeft kunnen brengen. Dit boek heeft me zeker geraakt en zal ik niet vergeten. Woorden komen tekort om de kracht van dit boek weer te geven. (Tranlation of Dutch: It amazes how the writer has used so many different themes in the book. It touched me and will not be forgotten. There aren't words to describe the power of this book.)

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