Although he’s certainly not alone in questioning the provenance of Harper Lee’s sequel written before the prequel, Go Set a Watchman, I like Adam Gopnik’s take the most out of all I’ve read so far. It’s tough, but if I had to pick a favorite passage from his piece in The New Yorker, it’s this (emphasis mine):
It is, I suppose, possible that Lee wrote it as we have it, and that her ingenious editor, setting an all-time record for editorial ingenuity, saw in a few paragraphs referring to the trial of a young black man the material for a masterpiece. But it would not be surprising if this novel turns out to be a revised version of an early draft, returned to later, with an eye to writing the “race novel” that elsewhere Harper Lee has mentioned as an ambition.
To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my all time favorite books (I know, very original), so the paint on the pre-order button barely had time to dry before I was one-clicking Go Set a Watchman into my future life. That future is now here and I don’t care how it might change my opinion of Atticus, I’m excited about checking in on the characters that Harper Lee so masterfully crafted.