Monday, July 27, 2015
Go Set a Watchman
If you go to Good Reads you will find that not everyone liked it..some hated it. Several good friends of mine had given it a five star review so that was good enough for me to head to the store to purchase my own copy! It is surprising to me that this book was found at just the time our country needs to wake up and smell the coffee so to speak. In our politically correct society, you must have the same opinion on all matters as the masses or you are a "hater". If you cannot tell, this just drives me CRAZY!! Go Set a Watchman teaches us that you can have differing opinions with others and you can still love and respect them. Can I get an AMEN?
As the book opens, Scout is now Jean Louise and is headed home to Maycomb to visit her family. After living in NYC, Jean Louise is feeling very self righteous and opinionated as she steps off the train in her old home town. She notices things that bother her and she finds she has moved ahead and left her father and old friend, Henry, behind. Still she tries to enjoy her visit until she finds that Atticus has feet of clay. For an only daughter who revered her father, this was hard to deal with and causes her much anguish. Her Uncle Jack brings her back to earth with a bang when he tells her that she has confused her father with God. The book comes to an end as Jean Louise realizes that the people who raised her are worthy of her respect even though they may not see things the same way and indeed may never come to a meeting of the minds.
Along the way Jean Louise shares many stories of her childhood, growing up with Jem, Dill and Jem's friend, Henry. These stories made me really LOL. She relates playing revival with Jem and Dill and it brought back many memories of playing "church" with my cousins. In the south, church is the big social function and playing church was common. ( I always wanted to be the piano player! One of my boy cousins was a gifted preacher.) The south that Harper Lee describes shows the charms and the failings of the south in equal measure. I will say that I think being a Southerner helps one to understand Go Set A Watchman. The South is a land of story tellers, porch sitters and sweet tea drinkers. This binds us together in a way that some cannot understand.
I gave this book five stars on Good Reads and I think it may well be my favorite book of 2015. I am sure I will read this book again and I will enjoy it just as much as I did the first time I turned it's pages.