Wednesday, January 24, 2007

A Walk Down Childhood's Lane



I had seen the movie around five years back when I was just barely making the pass grades in college. It was nice. It touched me. And I thought that that was all there was to it.

Fast forward to a few days back and Aathira recommends "mockingbird" to me. Since it was a 1961 Pulitzer prize winner, I thought it would deserve the time I gave it. After reading it, I was shocked that it took me so long, a voracious reader, to come across this marvelous piece of literature, so late. Shit happens? Hell, it does! Is what was running through my mind after coming to this realization.

Anyway, out with my pathetic state of affairs and on with the show. The story is narrated in the first-person view of a nine year old girl, Jean Louise Finch. Her brother is Jeremy Finch who is four years her elder. We will call them Scout and Jem respectively. Fortunately for us, that's their nicknames ;). And we have Atticus, their father.

But I don't think you would want me giving a review, right? There's plenty on the web just floatin' around for your picking.

Nome. I will just have to shoot a few lines regarding my experience with this book and hope that you too will feel the same when you read it. Or hope that you had felt it when you read it a long time ago.

First is the innocent humor with which Scout/Harper-Lee narrates the day to day going-ons of Maycomb County. I couldn't help but laugh at the childish but intelligent curiosity which kept me entertained. There are no big earth-shattering happenings going on but its the simple and down to earth story that made me relate to it in many ways. Harper Lee also paints a realistic picture of people. It makes them flesh and blood. They are not perfect. We feel that we could know them if given the chance. What made the book different from the movie (and more enjoyable) was seeing the story unfold through the eyes of a young child who has yet to understand adult ways. But that doesn't make it less bearable or more frustrating. It makes me wish that I was a child again.

The writings of Ayn Rand, especially her books The Fountainhead and For the New Intellectual provided me with food for the mind. But To Kill a Mockingbird is one of the few books to which I will give my heart away.

1 comment:

Parul said...

i agree completely!
the book is one of a kind!

hey, hav ya read 1984?