Big news! We will be publishing the recently discovered novel, Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee, under our publishing imprint William Heinemann, the original UK publisher of To Kill A Mockingbird, on 14th July 2015.

Harper Lee says, `In the mid-1950s, I completed a novel called Go Set a Watchman. 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 from the point of view of the young Scout. I was a first-time writer, so I did as I was told. I hadn’t realized it had survived, so was surprised and delighted when my dear friend and lawyer Tonja Carter discovered it. After much thought and hesitation 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.’

Go Set a Watchman is set during the mid-1950s and features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some twenty years later. Scout (Jean Louise Finch) has returned to Maycomb from New York to visit her father Atticus. She is forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand both her father’s attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood.

After To Kill a Mockingbird was published in 1960, Harper Lee set aside Go Set a Watchman, and never returned to it. The original manuscript of the novel was considered to have been lost until the autumn of 2014, when Tonja Carter discovered it in a secure location where it had been affixed to an original typescript of To Kill a Mockingbird.

Our CEO, Tom Weldon, says, ‘To Kill a Mockingbird is one of the most important and enduring books on the Penguin Random House lists and it is no surprise that time and again it is voted best loved by both the reading public and by educators.  The story of this first book – both parent to To Kill a Mockingbird and rather wonderfully acting as its sequel – is fascinating.  The publication of Go Set a Watchman will be a major event and millions of fans around the world will have the chance to reacquaint themselves with Scout, her father Atticus and the prejudices and claustrophobia of that small town in Alabama Harper Lee conjures so brilliantly.’

Susan Sandon, Divisional Managing Director, says, ‘I’m immensely proud that William Heinemann – Harper Lee’s original publishers – are publishing Go Set a Watchman and I know that, like To Kill a Mockingbird, it’s destined to speak to generations of readers.  Immersing oneself anew in the rhythms and cadences of Harper Lee’s rich prose and meeting Scout fully grown makes for an irresistible read which also casts new light on one of the most popular classics of modern literature.’

Will you be picking up a copy? Or is that a stupid question? 

Go Set a Watchman, Harper Lee (William Heinemann) is available to buy now. 

Join the conversation! 29 Comments

  1. When can we preorder it?

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  2. Yes I will read it.

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  3. This, to date, is the biggest and best news of 2015! I’m extremely excited to get my hands on this book!! Can’t wait…

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  4. Reblogged this on Icedmocha34 and commented:
    OMP!!!

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  5. I am both thrilled and a bit frightened. TKAM is such an enigmatic classic. Yes, any lover of that book might naturally want more, but not at the cost of skewering it’s memory. I trust Ms Lee has done as marvellous a job with Go Set A Watchman, as TKAM. Waiting with baited breath.

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  6. Yes! Can’t wait! And I’ll also suggest it to my book club…

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  7. I don’t suppose you will be selling any signed copies? 😉 Didn’t think so. I will be pre-ordering this ASAP. Like now.

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  8. So exciting! I can’t wait to get my hands on this book.

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  9. Definitely will!!!!

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  10. As an Alabama native, and great fan of Harper Lee, I am thrilled to hear this news!

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  11. Stupid question can’t wait july can’t come quick enough

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  12. Very stupid question! When can I preorder?

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  13. Can’t wait I read ” To Kill A Mockingbird” in 6th grade. I have to say that book turned me into a Book Lover! That is my favorite book of all time! Can not wait for ” Go Set A Watchman”.

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  14. Most assure I will be curling up with this book on the ocean front this summer and losing myself among its pages.

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  15. Can’t wait to read this sequel to the book that influenced my political positions more than any other fictional novel, Thank you Harper Lee I can’t wait to see what her great characters are up too this is a special treat!!!

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  16. I can’t wait!

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  17. I’ll be picking up a copy as soon as it’s available. What fantastic news!!!

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  18. Loved reading to Kill A Mockingbird more than once so why wouldn’t I rush to buy the new one. Will there be a pre-order?

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  19. Yes!!!!!!!!!

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  20. Pick up a copy? Of course!

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  21. I honestly have not been more excited for a book!

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  22. YES I will read it.

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