(Current fiction & past quality fiction)
In Albuquerque a novel set in the Deep South in the 1950s may be difficult to comprehend – the “N” word flows as freely as the southern dialect.
Examiner grew up in similar surroundings and while shocked at much of what went on Deep in the Heart of Texas, Examiner as a teenager fortunately had the “liberal” kind of parents who abhorred the unequal rights handed down from older generations to people of color.
“We are all the same in God’s eyes,” was the catch phrase within the family compound. If the teen Examiner drove the colored maid home with the maid seated in the front seat, the town gossips would talk about such “unseemly” acts.
Yes, one side of the tracks belonged to the coloreds and the white side of the town belonged to whites. There was a black high school and a white high school.
Albuquerque by comparison today ranks among the homogenized civilizations where Examiner has observed teens of all colors or lack of color embrace one to the other both verbally and physically without prejudice.
Fifty years has made a difference but Examiner wonders aloud whether readers of that tender age will appreciate the writing artistry with which Harper Lee fashioned “Go Set a Watchman” (Harper Luxe™ Harper Collins).
Fortunately, among the hundreds of other reviews of this “lost” novel by Lee, purportedly written before her classic “To Kill a Mockingbird,” the Chicago Tribune laid it out straight:
“Go Set a Watchman comes to us at exactly the right moment. All important works of art do. They come when we don’t know how much we need them.” (Chicago Tribune)
“. . . the voice we came to know so well in To Kill a Mockingbird — funny, ornery, rule-breaking — is right here in Go Set a Watchman, too, as exasperating and captivating as ever.” (Chicago Tribune)
“What makes Go Set a Watchman memorable is its sophisticated and even prescient view of the long march for racial justice. Remarkably, a novel written that long ago has a lot to say about our current struggles with race and inequality.” (Chicago Tribune)
Examiner hasn’t read a copy of the Chicago Tribune in more than a decade. Examiner’s thinking about subscribing now.
In the novel about 26-year old Jean Louise visiting her southern home from New York City she vents her frustration on her father Atticus and his response is, “I said I’m proud of you.”
Atticus was proud of Jean Louise for standing up for what she believed in. The novel’s title comes from the 21st chapter of Isaiah, verse six. Go read the book – recommended.
The writing style is one of the most comforting and easy flowing in America’s version of English literature.