Finish #62 – Go Set a Watchman

There’s been some excitement around her lately! Eldest daughter received her acceptance letter to her #1 college choice, along with a letter of acceptance into the pre-criminal justice program. YEAH! She’s thrilled. The next goal is acceptance into the honor’s college. Essay writing will commence soon. Fingers are crossed. We’re hoping for some extra scholarship money to be awarded that will help with room and board. Tuition is already covered by a scholarship. This weekend we’ll work on the dreaded FAFSA. I don’t even know if we should dread the FAFSA…I’m just remembering how my mother dreaded filling it out 20 years ago when I was applying to different colleges. All that time wasted and not a penny came from it. Maybe it’s changed. But being affiliated with the government, one can only assume that it’s about as user friendly as IRS tax forms.

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Finish #62 is Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee. I read To Kill a Mockingbird twice when I was in school, once in junior high and once in high school. I would list it as one of my favorites of the books that I was “forced” to read for school. (Along with The Good Earth, which I also read twice, The Grapes of Wrath, and Pride and Prejudice.) Go Set a Watchman is a sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird, but I have to say that I didn’t like it all that well. It seemed disjointed to me. I understood where Ms. Lee was going with the story, and she got the point across eventually through what I felt was a rather winding route, but it just felt like there was a lot of stuff in there that didn’t really add to the plot and, quite frankly, confused me as to its relevance. For instance, why go back and talk about Jean Louise and Jem’s friend Dill? Dill never appears in the flesh in the story. So why bring him up? Why tell us about Hank and Jean Louise going to a dance together and what happens to the false bosom that she wears? Is the relevance just lost on me, because I don’t see how that contributed to the story?

From what I just read online, it appears that I am not alone in my criticisms of this novel. Apparently at least one bookstore offered refunds to those who purchased it. Then we have Brilliant Books which stated in an online statement that we should think of the book as an “academic insight rather than a nice summer novel” Huh. If you have to tell me how I should think of a book…

I did glean one “slam” that I’d love to be able to use on that one person I know who talks way too much. Here it is in it’s entirety with credit to Harper Lee: “You are fascinated with yourself. You will say anything that occurs to you, but what I can’t understand are the things that do occur to you. I should like to take your head apart, put a fact in it, and watch it go its way through the runnels of your brain until it comes out of your mouth.”

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