||Few literary figures are more difficult to write about than Harper Lee, the author of the Pulitzer-winning TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. Though TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD has sold over 30 million copies, and is a staple of high-school syllabuses throughout the country, it is Lee's only novel. Shortly after its publication, she retreated from the public eye and has not granted interviews or assisted with any biographical work since--this book included. Despite these obstacles, Charles J. Shields has gamely spent four years gathering what he can, and through hundreds of interviews, and the use of some of Lee's notes for her friend Truman Capote's non-fiction novel IN COLD BLOOD, he has created the best portrait of the enigmatic author currently available. Still, there are numerous gaps and omissions, and the most illuminating sections concern the years leading up to 1960, the year when Lee finished her magnificent literary act, took her bow, and stepped backstage--seemingly forever.
||Furnishes an in-depth, meticulously researched portrait of the enigmatic woman behind the creation of To Kill a Mockingbird, describing the life and literary career of Harper Lee, her struggle to create her famed novel, and her contributions to the work of her lifelong friend Truman Capote's In Cold Blood. Reprint. 100,000 first printing.
|Editors Note 2
||“A fine, well-rounded portrait of Harper Lee. Mockingbird is good reading.”—Star-Tribune (Minneapolis)To Kill a Mockingbird—the twentieth century’s most widely read American novel—has sold thirty million copies and still sells a million yearly. Yet despite her book’s perennial popularity, its creator, Harper Lee, has become a somewhat mysterious figure. Now, after years of research, Charles J. Shields brings to life the warmhearted, high-spirited, and occasionally hardheaded woman who gave us two of American literature’s most unforgettable characters—Atticus Finch and his daughter, Scout.At the center of Shields’s evocative, lively book is the story of Lee’s struggle to create her famous novel, but her colorful life contains many highlights—her girlhood as a tomboy in overalls in tiny Monroeville, Alabama; the murder trial that made her beloved father’s reputation and inspired her great work; her journey to Kansas as Truman Capote’s ally and research assistant to help report the story of In Cold Blood. Mockingbird—unique, highly entertaining, filled with humor and heart—is a wide-ranging, idiosyncratic portrait of a writer, her dream, and the place and people whom she made immortal.