To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee

Today I am going to talk about a book that I love and that everyone should read.

To Kill a Mockingbird is an American novel of the best known. Published in 1960, it was so successful that it won the Pulitzer Prize and became a classic of American literature. The author, Harper Lee based her story on fiction but she included biographical elements of her childhood. This novel can remind us of a bildungsroman (a coming-of-age novel) and a detective novel.

The plot is setting in a little town of Alabama during the Great Depression of the 1930s. Atticus Finch raises his two children Jem and Scout alone. He works has a lawyer. Man of integrity and rigorous, he is appointed by the court to defend a black man accused of raping a white woman. This crime is punishable by the death penalty…

This book moved me to no end. It provides a wonderful reflection on the human condition and especially on the childhood, carried by the narrator Scout Finch.                              Scout is the little girl I wanted to be : sassy and feisty. She hangs around the neighbourhood, spends her time reading and climbing trees, she listens to the Sunday service at the church of blacks. She hates school and dresses, she responds tit for tat Aunt Alexandra who criticized her eternal dungarees stained with dust and the people she is mixing with. For Christmas, her father Atticus gave her a rifle. He even thinks that having a gun is an incentive to get shot, and asked her never to shoot the mockingbird. Because killing this bird would be « a sin ». Scout knows why : she is also a strange bird that can’ be put in a cage, who observes and tries to understand. She cries of rage at the stupidity and injustice, but she understands that we can also fight with words.

I absolutely recommend this wonderful book that tells us a lot about respect for others.

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