I remember reading To Kill A Mockingbird and thinking that it was the #1 best work of Southern fiction that I had ever read. Then I saw the movie, and wanted to go back to the book, to live in Scout's world, except a better one, one from which Atticus had managed to excise the ugliness and racism. It was a good thought, but it was impossible.
Erin reads her mother's copy of To Kill A Mockingbird obsessively. It is a book full of layers, full of complex ideas and thoughtful comments scrawled in the margins. These words are priceless because Erin never knew her mother, and has missed her it seems forever.
On the night before her 16th birthday, Erin's father gives Erin the diary her mother kept as a teen. Finding out that her mother wrote Harper Lee a letter in 1963 makes Erin believe that she has to leave her home in Minnesota find Harper Lee in Alabama, for she's almost sure that somehow Harper Lee is a connection with her mother.
It was a good thought, but...
In Search of Mockingbird is an optimistic novel that celebrates the power of love and connection even in the face of death.
After I read this one I thought there should be a column or feature or something I could do about classics and books about the classic - like King Dork and Catcher in the Rye and these two Mockingbird titles and so on.
It seems like it would be so much easier to get kids to read them if they read the modern book first.
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