Audiobook Review: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south – and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as a digital audiobook.

One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than 40 languages, sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the 20th century by librarians across the country. A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father – a crusading local lawyer – risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.

To Kill a Mockingbird

“I think there’s just one kind of folks. Folks.”

The following ratings are out of 5:
Story/Plot: 📕📗📙📘📔
World building: 🌏🌍🌎🌍🌏
Character development: 😠😘🤓😉😮
Narrator(s): 🎙🎙🎙🎙🎙
Narration Type: Solo Narration

I haven’t read this book or watched the movie in many years, though I knew I loved both. This time I listened via audiobook and it was terrific. Sissy Spacek did the narration and she did it wonderfully. She has a perfect accent for this and puts a lot of emotion into her reading. She just couldn’t have done a better job.

This book is one of the most often banned books in America, because of the use of the N word, strong language and discussion of sexuality and rape. The strong language and racial slurs are basically necessary since that is the way Georgia was in the south during the 1930’s (and much later), it just makes it authentic. I don’t even want to mention the other since how can you have a book about a rape trial without a discussion of it. I was listening for the pure enjoyment of the story and I did love it, there are so many great quotes from this book!

“If there’s just one kind of folks, why can’t they get along with each other? If they’re all alike, why do they go out of their way to despise each other? Scout, I think I’m beginning to understand something. I think I’m beginning to understand why Boo Radley’s stayed shut up in the house all this time. It’s because he wants to stay inside.”

Scout, Jem and their friend Dill Harris who stayed at his aunt’s house next door every summer. Ran around their neighborhood (as long as they were in hearing range of their maid Calpurnia), having adventures. Their neighbors on the other side were the Radley’s, who were infamous in Macon for the fact that their son, Boo Radley who lives there, hasn’t been seen since he was an unruly teenager. He is the local scary legend and kids ran past the house, rather than walked and wouldn’t eat the walnuts that fell from the tree in the Radley’s yard for fear of poisoning.

“I think I’ll be a clown when I get grown,’ said Dill. Jem and I stopped in our tracks. ‘Yes sir, a clown,’ he said. ‘There ain’t one thing in this world I can do about folks except laugh, so I’m gonna join the circus and laugh my head off.’
‘You got it backwards, Dill,’ said Jem. ‘Clowns are sad, it’s folks that laugh at them.”

The kids were obsessed with seeing Boo Radley. They came up with all kinds of dares and plans to draw Boo out of the house. I think every neighborhood had a house like that, which was a bit more rundown than the rest or you just never seemed to see the inhabitants, they just didn’t come out and mingle like the rest of the neighbors. We used to sneak over that fence in our neighborhood and steal crab apples off the tree. Dill dares Jem to go inside the gate, go up to the house and touch it. It took Jem 3 days to build up the courage, but he was never one to turn down a dare and finally did it. The kids get braver as time passes.

“Real courage is when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.”

The book is told in Scout’s point of view, she looks up to Atticus, her father and he is not only a great father to the kids, but is also a good person in general. He always gives the kids great advice and always seems to do the right thing. Especially when he agrees to defend a black man accused of raping a white woman in the deep south and so much hate comes their way.

“It was times like these when I thought my father, who hated guns and had never been to any wars, was the bravest man who ever lived.”

“Some negroes lie, some are immoral, some negro men are not be trusted around women – black and white. But this is a truth that applies to the human race and to no particular race of men.”

“They’re ugly, but those are the facts of life.”

“Atticus, are we going to win it?”
“No, honey.”
“Then why – ”
“Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason for us not to try to win,” Atticus said.

“Scout,” said Atticus, “nigger-lover is just one of those terms that don’t mean anything—like snot-nose. It’s hard to explain—ignorant, trashy people use it when they think somebody’s favoring Negroes over and above themselves. It’s slipped into usage with some people like ourselves, when they want a common, ugly term to label somebody.”
“You aren’t really a nigger-lover, then, are you?”
“I certainly am. I do my best to love everybody . . . I’m hard put, sometimes—baby, it’s never an insult to be called what somebody thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person is, it doesn’t hurt you. So don’t let Mrs. Dubose get you down. She has enough troubles of her own.”

“Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”


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