Review: To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird, Novel by Harper Lee, published in 1960.

It is set in the fictional town of Maycomb, Ala., during the Great Depression. The protagonist is Jean Louise (“Scout”) Finch, an intelligent and unconventional girl who ages from six to nine years old during the course of the novel. She and her brother, Jem, are raised by their widowed father, Atticus Finch, a prominent lawyer who encourages his children to be empathetic and just. When Tom Robinson, a Black man, is falsely accused of raping Mayella Ewell, a white woman, Atticus agrees to defend him despite threats from the community. Although Atticus’s defense is strong, Tom is convicted, and he is later killed while trying to escape custody. A character compares his death to “the senseless slaughter of songbirds,” which echoes Atticus’s comment to his children that it is “a sin to kill a mockingbird.”

To Kill a Mockingbird was praised for its sensitive treatment of a child’s awakening to racism and prejudice in the American South. Enormously popular, it was translated into some 40 languages and sold more than 30 million copies worldwide. In 1961 it won a Pulitzer Prize.


This is a classic for a reason, but having never read it before it was first on my list this year. I’ve set myself a classic challenge this year, and it’s my goal to read 12 classic books. This was number one. I was never lucky enough to read this book in school and instead my class was set various other tasks. I always remember being jealous of those reading this one, because it sound important. I’m not sure why I’ve put it off this long, but this book is excellent. Powerful, educational and honest. 

Kay Page