Go Set a Watchman

Go Set a Watchman

by Harper Lee

Paperback(Large Print)

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Now available in a gorgeous, limited leatherbound edition, Harper Lee’s landmark #1 New York Times bestselling novel set two decades after her beloved Pulitzer Prize–winning masterpiece, To Kill a Mockingbird.

Maycomb, Alabama. Twenty-six-year-old Jean Louise Finch—“Scout”—returns home from New York City to visit her aging father, Atticus. Set against the backdrop of the civil rights tensions and political turmoil that were transforming the South, Jean Louise’s homecoming turns bittersweet when she learns disturbing truths about her close-knit family, the town, and the people dearest to her. Memories from her childhood flood back, and her values and assumptions are thrown into doubt. Featuring many of the iconic characters from To Kill a Mockingbird, Go Set a Watchman perfectly captures a young woman, and a world, in painful yet necessary transition out of the illusions of the past—a journey that can only be guided by one’s own conscience.

Written in the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman imparts a fuller, richer understanding and appreciation of Harper Lee. Here is an unforgettable novel of wisdom, humanity, passion, humor, and effortless precision—a profoundly affecting work of art that is both wonderfully evocative of another era and relevant to our own times. It not only confirms the enduring brilliance of To Kill a Mockingbird, but also serves as its essential companion, adding depth, context, and new meaning to an American classic.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780594718611
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 07/14/2015
Edition description: Large Print
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 280,119
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Harper Lee was born in 1926 in Monroeville, Alabama. She is the author of the acclaimed To Kill a Mockingbird and Go Set a Watchman, which became a phenomenal #1 New York Times bestseller when it was published in July 2015. Ms. Lee received the Pulitzer Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and numerous other literary awards and honors. She died on February 19, 2016.


Monroeville, Alabama

Date of Birth:

April 28, 1926

Date of Death:

February 19, 2016

Place of Birth:

Monroeville, Alabama

Place of Death:

Monroeville, Alabama

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Go Set a Watchman 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 330 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Watchman is how it is, Mockingbird is how you would hope it would be. Both capture our long history of shame and hope. Buzzy Wyland
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a shame she only wrote the two books. I enjoyed Watchman almost as much as Mockingbird. There are some suprises in store, but the characters are still vibrant, albiet slightly more human. She can make you laugh, cry and mad all at the same time. I found it well paced and easy to read. Scout is still Scout, and yes Atticus is still Atticus, having said this though I think the publisher was right, Mockingbird was superior and a better fit for the time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was very good. It conveys messages of love and forgiveness. I would recommend this book anyday. It helped me better understand To Kill A Mockingbird even better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This highly anticipated book is nothing more than a greedy money grab by the publishers, lawyers and agents. I am skeptical that this book was entirely written by Lee. It appears to be the result of an unfinished manuscript that has been highly edited to create a buzz around a forced political agenda. In her orginal novel the memorable characters were created through subtle language and the innocence of a child. This novel is full of endless tirades, tedious dialouges and references that are meaningless to the plot. I feel that Miss Lee has been the victim of greedy people that do not care about her legacy. Maybe the Atticus of Mockingbird could answer the question where has integrity gone?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book as much as her first and I am glad I took the day off simply to read it. It was very dramatic and really kind of opened my mind! I hate the fact that this probably will not be allowed in schools because this was marvelous read just as To Kill A Mockingbird.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
With TKAM as one of my favorite books, I had high hopes for GSAW. My hopes were completely shattered. It's as if Harper Lee was just brainstorming character stories and race plots to better prepare for the second book (Mockingbird.) Nothing lined up with Mockingbird. Jem died (and we're not going to even talk about it?), there's a childhood friend we've never heard of, and where's Boo Radley? Not to mention, the entire Tom Robinson court case plot line is completely changed. Part of me feels like Lee wasn't even the author and if she truly was, I hate that this was published and "ruined" (for lack of a better word) her legacy. Just read and reread Mockingbird and let's forget Watchman ever existed. (Like I believe Harper Lee wanted it. )
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book is better than the critics seem to think.
Penny Hoene More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I ever read. Atticus is not a racist; he is a bigot, but then again - everyone is a bigot. If you think about this word in depth, then you will realize that everyone is a bigot. Scout lived her whole life under the opinion her father had no flaws. Yet he had profound wisdom.... Scout reiterates what she heard from him and is angered by his state at the Council Meeiing; he states "Equal rights for all; special privileges for none" He expains himself and it is all taken out of context, because Voting is a priviledge and one needs to be fully responsible of citizenship, and he felt that the vast majority who were voting at the moment, had no full understanding of the implications it had, due to lack of education. Altough 75% were black, this wasn't the issue; it was the lack of education and understanding in the law, and that the 10th Amendment was being overstepped. He complained that they should be left alone to manage their own affairs in a live and let-live economy, and that the NAACP who didn't know anything about local business and could care less came in to dictate and make demands because they only cared about votes . It is more indepth than this, but you get the impression that Atticus has seen ugliness of politics and is trying to navigate around it. Scout decides she can not tolerate this and wants to run from her life, die almost literally and that her childhood friend, Hank is the same as her father - a disappointment. Yet when she storms away and goes home to pack and run off, her Uncle Jack comes and sheds lights . He basically slaps her (even in the literal sense) and begins to tell her that she was born and raised a bigot. Through Jack's eyes she comes to realize that he has valid point, he states,"you were born with a conscience somewhere along the line fastened it like a barnacle onto your father's. As you grew up, when you were grown, to-tally unknown to yourself, you confused with your father with God. You never saw your father as a man with a man's heart, and a man's failings..... he makes few mistakes, but he makes them like the rest of us. You were an emotional cripple, leaning on him, getting the answers from him, assuming that your answers would always be his answers" He adds, "your father and I wondered sometimes when your conscience and his would part company, and over what. And now we know what." He explained earlier that every man's watchman is his conscience, so it is all becoming clear to her know. He asks her, "What does a bigot do when he meets someone who challenges his opinion? He doesn't give, He stays rigid and doesn't even try to listen, just lashes out. She realizes that she is a bigot, because she did this to her father. He defends his brother by stating that his brother, Atticus will always try to do better by the spirit of the law (there is more to this - much more). In the end, Scout finds peace with Attiticus and they immediately reconcile, because Scout asks forgiveness for lashing out at him, and then Attitcus states "Scout, you may be sorry, but I'm proud of you. I certainly hoped a daughter of mine'd hold her ground for what she thinks is right - stand up to me first of all." Atticus is not racist and Scout wasn't raised racist I thank H L for publishing this book. Better late than never. I appreciate the wait, because I do not think this book would have been well-received in the 1950's Releasing it now, is pure GENIUS....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book. Now granted it is a book of its time and Harper was just recilatipn on what she remembers growing up in the deep south and during that time as it is now the abuse is still going on. If these people don't get that well that their opinion. Reality check people this book also teaches history.
furrawn More than 1 year ago
I refuse to write spoilers. The book needs to unfold for you, the reader. Having said that, the book is amazing. Different from Mockingbird yet the same. I think the first paragraph in chapter three is identical to a paragraph in Mockingbird. Most of Mockingbird is encapsulated in a few sentences looking back by an adult Scout. Atticus. He's a moral good one-dimensional man in Mockingbird. Scout was starting first grade. Atticus in Mockingbird was the Atticus of a six-year-old who adored her father. Atticus in Watchman is three-dimensional, flawed, and amazing still. Watchman will rip out your insides. It's a damned uncomfortable read. The first half is funny as Hell. The second half makes you so uncomfortable that it's hard to breathe. The honesty in the voices. The guileless comments. The hatred. The love. I don't think this book could be written now. It's not politically correct to even attempt to discuss this book. Many will say they hated the book simply because that will preclude having to talk about it. It's uncomfortable. It's a shockingly honest peek into human bejngs and how flawed they are, especially when afraid. It's a peek into how heroic a human father can be, flawed though he is, in loving his daughter and wanting her to believe what is right for her. It's an honest book. Every bit as good as Mockingbird. It's hard to read though. Be prepared to hold your mind open. There are many different sides in the book. Seeing all of them while not agreeing with them is hard. Which, I think, after all, is exactly the point Harper wanted to make. We're all Childe Harold.
thedarknight More than 1 year ago
I just finished GSAW and I wanted to contribute my thoughts on this work. As a high school English teacher, I have read TKAM many times, and was looking forward to reading GSAW. I was looking forward to visiting my old friends as they continued on their path of life. My hope was that their continued journey would further add enlightenment to my own world. That being said, I will admit that I was caught off-guard many times as I read this novel. As I read GSAW, I endeavored to put the two works together in one timeline. I worked to rectify the Atticus in GSAW with the Atticus in TKAM. I worked to accept the fates of all the characters as they passed into GSAW while keeping in mind that GSAW was written first. It was impossible to do. I WANTED the Atticus and the Scout and Jem and Dill of TKAM to continue on the character path that was begun in TKAM. I was not being fair to Ms. Lee or her monumental works. The irony is that GSAW deals with the very issue with which I was wrestling: rectifying what a person really is versus what we want him/her to be. This realization caught me by surprise, made me cry, and endeared this book to me. GSAW is NOT TKAM, it's deeper in its understanding of people versus characters as icons. People are flawed and people justify their actions to themselves and others. For example: we, as a society, are addicted to the sagas of the movie and TV icons who fall short in our eyes and prove that they're all just flawed humans beings like the rest of us. The difference is that their troubles and misdeeds end up on the cover of "People" magazine. My feeling is that the characters in GSAW go beyond the characters in most novels, they are not characters who will settle as mere icons to be put on a shelf like in TKAM who get read and romanticized when we need them to make us feel better and remind us to stand up for one another. The characters in GSAW are closer to real people and they have views and beliefs that we may not agree with. Just like real people, these characters hold to their beliefs and thumb their noses at the reader who would like them to be someone or something else of icon status. Just like those we live with and live nearby in our own Maycomb community, these characters demand the right to their own views and beliefs. Such an uncompromising approach will leave many cold and pass this unique work off as a footnote in TKAMs shadow. I feel that such a placement is missing out on the beauty of the work and its message. I don't feel that I absorbed everything on the first read. I will read this work again after absorbing what it says versus what I wanted it to say. I owe Ms. Lee that. I hope others will give it the benefit of thought as well. I can visualize this novel becoming a college course. From the humor to the beauty of its deeper message, I feel this book could lead to many late night discussions if given the chance. I will never have the opportunity to read this book again for the first time but I will enjoy it again with opened eyes. I am saddened that these two works are all we'll ever get from Ms. Lee but I'm grateful that we have them. Just like Jean Louise on her train ride to Maycomb, I hope others will enjoy the ride.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Received this book in hardback as a gift. I tried to finish it, but just scanned it about half way. I do not think this was written by Harper. Maybe it was an outline and some ghost writer finished it. Just did not ring true. Even the time setting seemed false, like someone who did not live in the 50's. Just poorly written and not true to the original characters. I cannot recommend this book. I read on-line a bookstore is offering customers' money back. For my friend, thanks for the gift. At least, I understand that a great writer was taken advantaged of in her elder years. Maybe she will receive enough revenue to make her life easier.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Time has weathered the heroes of my youth quite beautifully. Like a beautiful old wooden door time has taken liberties with the character of my heroes off To Kill a Mockingbird. In some places the wood seems harsh and raw while in other ways smooth and polished as it ever was. The door doesn't quite fit in the jam the way it used to, but it's still a beautiful door. Don't let fear get the best of you. The internet is a buzz with fear mongering tales of blatant racism and hatred for humanity now evident in the characters. Only believe half of what you've heard. Sometimes tolerance can be unclean. As we get older we find that if we take off our blinders we may see that we have changed as much as our world appears to have changed around us. READ THIS BOOK. It's just as good and powerful as the more popular tale we used to love.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the book thank you nook
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very alive and absorbing. I read it in one sitting. The links between this book and To Kill A Mockingbird make it extra interesting even though it's a different story. Go Set a Watchman is about a young woman growing up, not about one childhood summer. I found both stories uplifting even though they delve into the complexities and ugliness of human relations.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I finally finished the book, kept thinking it would get better...it didn't. I even stopped reading and switched to "To Kill a Mockingbird", thinking that Harper Lee didn't write this latest, to check the style. I'm still not convinced, as " Mockingbird " flowed so nicely and "Watchman" didn't. I would've given only one star, but there were some parts made me laugh, otherwise, it was a boring story.
LoveToReadJFE More than 1 year ago
When Jean Louise [Scout] Finch returns home from New York City for her annual two-week visit, she is forced to face some unsettling truths about her family, her friends, and her home town. Jean Louise finds herself questioning her own long-held beliefs. Can she reconcile what she believes in her heart with the disturbing facts that are brought to light? How will these facts affect the relationship she has with her father? Set in the mid-1950s, Maycomb, Alabama is a microcosmic view of the southern response to political and cultural transformations amid the tumult of the growing civil rights movement. Richly-drawn flashbacks of Scout’s growing-up years are a highlight, providing insight into the events that shaped the young woman she has become as well as speaking to the character of Atticus Finch. There is humor, pathos, love, joy, melancholy, heartache . . . the stuff of life itself. Readers will find Jean Louise’s bittersweet coming-of-age story relevant both to the time period in which it occurs and to the characteristics and values of her father. Eight-year-old Scout’s hardscrabble 1930s Deep South life has morphed into Jean Louise’s adult world in which the burgeoning civil rights movement is taking hold. Atticus, once seen only through depthless childhood eyes, has become a more complex, more complete, multi-dimensional character. At seventy-two, he’s a man of the time in which he lives. And yet, in ways that matter, he remains essentially unchanged. “The law is what he lives by,” Uncle Jack tells Jean Louise. And if we somehow discover that perhaps our idols are somewhat less than pure perfection, we would be wise to remember the good they’ve done instead of tumbling them from the pedestals upon which we’ve enshrined them. GO SET A WATCHMAN, written with wit and humor and a wonderful lyrical quality, is absolutely outstanding. A narrative that is moving and often uncomfortable, its compelling story will remain with readers long after the final page has been turned. Highly recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Impossible to compete with to kill a mockingbird but it gives an insightful view of the times in the south.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Go set a watchman by Harper Lee is one of the best novels I have ever read. The book itself is full of messages and is extremeley insightful/relateable to the world around us today. I whole heartedly recomend this book to everyone with an open mind. I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did! P.S. Harper Lee is a genious!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Probably one of the very best books written. My husbsnd and I generslly have different reading taste, but we both loved it. The author brings the story so vividly. I can't wait for the paperback version so I csn send it as a gift to someone special. Definately five star!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Having read the varied reviews i decided to read it. I wanted it to be great but i didnt love it. It just doesn't sound like the same author. For me, the best thing to have happened is that i found i that mockingbird was realeased finally to ebooks.
NeedlepointShop More than 1 year ago
An insight into the 50's mindset, but can help see the mindset of today. A very good book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Started out promising but got bogged down in the swamp of trying to explain Atticus ' racism. I finished it but know several people who gave up in the middle .
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book never gets off the ground and ends without any resolution. It is a real disappointment. To Kill a Mockingbird is a much better book that makes the reader care about the characters. I found myself skimming sections in the hope that it would get interesting, but it never improved. :(
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mockingbird portrayed Scout,Jem and Atticus as ideal people. Watchman made them real. Scout " came of age" in Watchman, no longer seeing her Father as the perfect man she believed him to be. Atticus seemed to depend on the law to bring order tto an imperfect world. No politician in the south during the forties and fifties would have everyone love him and not have the taint of racism, even if it was not obvious. I wonder what Atticus would have been like if he was not born and raised in the South