Advertisement

Harper Lee to publish novel she wrote 60 years ago

"I was a first time writer, so I did as I was told," Harper Lee said, explaining why she abandoned her first novel for "To Kill A Mockingbird."

By Frances Burns
Harper Lee to publish novel she wrote 60 years ago
Harper Lee with President George W. Bush on Nov, 5, 2007, at the White House on Nov. 5, 2007, the day she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. UPI File Photo by Roger L. Wollenberg | License Photo

NEW YORK, Feb. 3 (UPI) -- Harper Lee, author of "To Kill A Mockingbird" and the ultimate one-book wonder, plans to publish a second novel she wrote 60 years ago.

In a statement released Tuesday by publisher HarperCollins, Lee said she only recently discovered a manuscript copy of "Go Set a Watchman" existed. It was found in a "secure location" by a friend, Tonja Carter.

Advertisement

"I shared it with a handful of people I trust and was pleased to hear that they considered it worthy of publication. I am humbled and amazed that this will now be published after all these years," she said.

Lee said the novel, written in the 1950s, was the inspiration for "To Kill A Mockingbird" and is also a sequel, although it was written first.

RELATED Alice Lee, lawyer and sister of Harper Lee, dead at 103

"It features the character known as Scout as an adult woman, and I thought it a pretty decent effort. My editor, who was taken by the flashbacks to Scout's childhood, persuaded me to write a novel (what became To Kill a Mockingbird) from the point of view of the young Scout," she said. "I was a first-time writer so I did as I was told."

Advertisement

"To Kill A Mockingbird," published in 1960, brought Lee the Pulitzer Prize for fiction and millions of dollars in royalties. It was made into a film and has become a staple of high-school reading lists.

Lee assisted her childhood friend, Truman Capote, with his book "In Cold Blood" and started a couple of other books. She has shied away from media interviews and refused to give speeches when she was awarded honorary degrees.

RELATED Harper Lee agrees to release 'To Kill a Mockingbird' as ebook

Now 88, she lives in Monroeville, Ala., the town where she grew up.

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement