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To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird

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August 08, 2008  
 
4.8 (2)
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To Kill a Mockingbird

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Publish Date:
ISBN:
9780060935467
Pages:
336pp
Reading Age:
Award Year:
Available On Overdrive
Yes
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Synopsis

At the age of eight, Scout Finch is an entrenched free-thinker. She can accept her father's warning that it is a sin to kill a mockingbird, because mockingbirds harm no one and give great pleasure. The benefits said to be gained from going to school and keeping her temper elude her.

The place of this enchanting, intensely moving story is Maycomb, Alabama. The time is the Depression, but Scout and her brother, Jem, are seldom depressed. They have appalling gifts for entertaining themselves—appalling, that is, to almost everyone except their wise lawyer father, Atticus.

Atticus is a man of unfaltering good will and humor, and partly because of this, the children become involved in some disturbing adult mysteries: fascinating Boo Radley, who never leaves his house; the terrible temper of Mrs. Dubose down the street; the fine distinctions that make the Finch family "quality"; the forces that cause the people of Maycomb to show compassion in one crisis and unreasoning cruelty in another.

Also because Atticus is what he is, and because he lives where he does, he and his children are plunged into a conflict that indelibly marks their lives—and gives Scout some basis for thinking she knows just about as much about the world as she needs to.

Annotation

Winner of the 1961 Pulitzer Prize for Literature, Fiction.

User reviews

2 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.8
Story held my interest 
 
4.8  (2)
Writing style 
 
4.8  (2)
Characters 
 
5.0  (2)
Ratings (the higher the better)
Story held my interest
Writing style
Characters
User Review
Discuss the setting and the role it played. Describe when and where the story takes place.
Who are the main characters? What problems or conflicts does each character face in the book? Briefly describe each character.
What are the good points of this book? What did the author do well? Tell why you liked the book.
What, if any, were the bad points in the book? What did you feel the author did poorly? Tell why you didn't like the book.
This is where you give a brief summary of the book. Tell about at least two events that took place in the story. Don't give away the ending but give a 20 second synopsis that describes the story.
Without giving away the ending tell whether or not the ending was satisfying. Did the end fit the story?
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Story held my interest 
 
4.5
Writing style 
 
4.5
Characters 
 
5.0

To Kill a Mockingbird

User Review

Setting
The setting of To Kill a Mockingbird is a very important aspect of the story. This book is in the city of Maycomb in Alabama in the 1930’s. The place in which it takes place has a lot to do with what goes on throughout the book and also explains why a lot of the things a lot of the events take place. For example, it is described that Maycomb is a very small town. Because the setting is the small town of Maycomb, it allows the main characters to have contact with a good majority of the people who live there so they all make a big difference with what comes to play during the book.
Characters
There are several main characters in this book, I will describe them to you in paragraph form.
Atticus Finch is the single father of his two children: Jeremy (Jem) and Jean Louise (Scout) who he loves very dearly. His wife died at a young age, leaving him to raise their children alone. Atticus is a lawyer for a living, and at the time the book takes place he takes on an unpopular case for a black man (Tom Robinson) who has supposedly raped a teenage girl that lives in Maycomb. Despite extreme judgment and criticism from the people of Maycomb, Atticus continues to defend for him because he believes that that’s the right thing to do.
Jeremy (Jem) Finch is the eldest child of Atticus Finch. At the beginning of the book Jem is ten years old and enjoys playing with his little sister Scout and friend Dill in his free time. Jem is naive, and susceptible to a lot of trouble throughout the book.
Jean Louise (Scout) Finch is the youngest child of Atticus Finch. Scout is a tomboy and does not like to go to school. She would much rather spend her time playing with her brother Jem and friend Dill and learning more about Boo Radley who is their mysterious neighbor. Boo cares very deeply for her family and looks up to her father in many ways.
Arthur (Boo) Radley is a mysterious and somewhat scary person to all the people in Maycomb, especially Jem and Scout. It is told in the book of various legends relating to Boo and the way he spends his time. Through a great deal of the book Scout and Jem work to discover more about their interesting neighbor.
I didn’t have any problems with the book, I really enjoyed it! An interesting thing about it, though, is that there are a lot of different things going on the entire time and they only really make sense with how they are linked at the very end. That being said though, it has a very beautiful ending and I loved the way it was put together!
Good Points
There are many aspects of this book that I found both enticing and good! The main one that comes to mind deals with Atticus Finch. Throughout the book Atticus stays true to himself and the things that he believes. No amount of persecution or bullying from those around him could persuade him to cave into peer pressure. I find that a very admirable quality in a person, and I think that everyone could learn something from Atticus. The other part of Atticus that adds to my respect for him is the fact that he is able to keep his children protected and his first priority throughout the book and still set that amazing example of standing up for what’s right.
Another good point that is brought up and is sort of a moral of the story deals with judgment. This is a subject that I feel is addressed fairly regularly within the classroom and generally just throughout life, but the way that Harper teaches about it through her writing is incredible to me! Instead of simply going out and saying it, she applies it to real life instances which demonstrates how people actually react to the problem. It also shows how judgment from others can really affect the lives of those being judged.
Bad Points
I do not have any bad points to address. I sincerely loved the way this book was written and the content inside.
Plot Summary
To Kill a Mockingbird is a story about a family living in Maycomb, Alabama. Atticus Finch takes a case to help prove an accused man to be innocent, but will it cost him his career? Jem and Scout, both still young children, watch as their father struggles and figure out for themselves through some of their own experiences as well what prejudices judgment can do to a community. This story is a fantastic example of a family working together to fight for what they believe is right.

Ending
The end was definitely satisfying and fit the story quite well. The funny part about it though is that it didn’t make a lot of sense in my head how all of the events going on fit together until the very end. With the last major event, all of the puzzle pieces fit together in a really amazing way! I really enjoyed it, and I loved that there were a lot of in between the line lessons to this story.
Do you recommend this book?
Yes
Language
PG-13
Sexual Content
PG-13
Violence
PG-13
Drug and Alcohol Use
PG
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Story held my interest 
 
5.0
Writing style 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0

To Kill a Mockingbird

User Review

Setting
Set in Maycomb, Alabama during the Depression, the story focuses on Scout and Jem while Maycomb is in the midst of a legal case that precedes the civil rights movement by several years.
Characters
Scout - the narrator, is on the brink of beginning school in the fall. In the meantime, she and her brother, Jem, enjoy the days of summer.

The neighborhood is peopled with an assortment of characters, one of which is the focus of Scout and Jem's attention.

Boo Radley is a legend to be feared. He never leaves his house, other than at night, and dines primarily on raw squirrels. He looks in windows and watches some of the ladies sleep. Or so the story goes...

Atticus is Scout and Jem's father, and is a prominent community member and a practicing lawyer. As the story plays out, Atticus is assigned to defend a black man, Tom Robinson, for a crime against a white woman.

Good Points
The story, as told through Scout's eyes, does a wonderful job of telling the story of Tom Robinson and his alleged assault on Mayella Ewell. Scout's perspective is one of innocence and through this the reader gains a great deal of insight into the ramifications of such a case in the South before the Civil Rights Movement. While the story of the court case could very easily be the entire focus, the reader is treated to a glimpse of days past when neighbors played an important part in the life of children. There's a bit of a mystery around Boo Radley, which weaves through the book and is relevant in many respects to the story of Tom Robinson.

The book is well written and Scout, as the narrator, weaves a wonderful story of choice, oppression, and right and wrong. Each time I read it, Scout draws me into the story all over again. Without question, this is my favorite book of all time.
Bad Points
Absolutely none!
Plot Summary
While Scout, Jem, and Dill roam the neighborhood and observe the residents of Maycomb, they become preoccupied with the story and mystery of Boo Radley. As the summer moves along, they build their entertainment around his life and become preoccupied with making him come out of the house. Meanwhile, Atticus is assigned the case of Tom Robinson, accused of assaulting Mayella Ewell. Scout, Jem, and Dill, over a few summers, observe the upheaval and tensions resulting from a town where black people don't have the same rights as white people.
Ending
Absolutely!
Do you recommend this book?
Yes
Language
G
Sexual Content
PG
Violence
PG
Drug and Alcohol Use
G
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