Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

Started: January 2, 2016

Finished: January 9, 2016


As a whole, I enjoyed this book much more than I enjoyed To Kill a Mockingbird. It moved with a quicker pace and an older Jean Louise Finch was much more appealing to me than a younger Jean Louise Finch. I was going to give this book five stars, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I couldn’t bring myself to do it for one reason: Jean Louise’s character development.

I never liked Jean Louise. Not once, through all of To Kill a Mockingbird. She seemed arrogant, pigheaded, and had a little bit of a superiority complex (See: Her opinions about the Cunninghams). I actually really liked her in Go Set a Watchman. I enjoyed how complex her character had become, and the new personal views she carried with herself. During one specific encounter with her father, I was fully prepared to give this book five stars because of how excellently this young woman was written…

And then I read the last two chapters of the book.

And it was suddenly like nothing had happened to Jean Louise at all. It was as if the second half of the book had never happened. She accepted her father’s racism instead of attempting to combat it, she went back out with Henry instead of fighting for her ideals. She made a complete reverse to the character she was at the beginning of the book, and to me, Jean Louise Finch deserved more than that.

I enjoyed the pace, and the actual storyline of the novel well enough to give it four stars, I just wish with all my heart that Jean Louise could have been given a better ending. But all in all, I’m satisfied with this sequel as a whole, and I believe that Harper Lee couldn’t have mastered a better form of writing with which to tell this story.

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