For the past two nights I have had dreams of death. I looked up what that means - the theme of death means the end of something or the beginning of profound change. When I shared this with Hubby this morning, we both said, "(I'm/You're) killing Atticus!" I was. I did.
I just finished the book.
I read that this draft is just that - it's another draft. This article fleshes that theory out: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mary-alice-franklin/go-set-a-watchman-a-draft-not-a-novel_b_7805658.html
But I must say that a Harper Lee draft is still head and shoulders above many novels that have made it to the publishing stage. The book is very well written. The characters are believable. The story flows. It's very, very good. It's not To Kill a Mockingbird good in terms of prose and flow, but it's very good. I was not disappointed.
Nor was I disappointed in the story or the character arcs. The characters are true. They are true to themselves and to the times, I believe. As difficult as it is to reconcile some of the choices made, I am not surprised nor am I as dismayed as I thought I would be.
It's interesting that it's come to light at this point in history - at another crossroads in racial relations. I hope that it will spark many, many conversations. Honest conversations. We have way too few of those.
The book takes place in the 1950s when race relations and civil rights were SO new, SO raw. It takes place when people were still figuring out where they stood and where they were going to stand. It asks of its characters, "Who are you?" and "What do you want your world to be?" These are incredibly difficult themes. These are themes that we are still wrestling with today.
I will read this again. I will study it. I think it is difficult and important and relevant.
And to Atticus, I will say, "I think I love you very much."