BOOK REVIEWS

Alabama Spitfire: The Story of Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-10-02 
Review Score: 4 out of 5 star From 0 user ratings
ISBN:0062456709
LANGUAGE:English

"I admire the book and the artwork. I admire the subject of the book like crazy—like many of my generation, I was required to read To Kill a Mockingbird as a school assignment. And despite that, I loved it.

Lee’s second book is mentioned in the endnotes. In an attempt to present Lee as a shining knight in opposition to racism, Hegedus shies away from Lee’s more nuanced portrait of Atticus Finch—one that shows a white population happy to stand up for black folks...provided they know their place.

This just feels like a book calculated to catch the attention of adult book buyers, but not necessarily the children for whom it’s intended.

And next on my pile is a picture book biography of Jane Austen, about which I have similar thoughts.
" said.

"As a reader with a deep appreciation of "To Kill A Mockingbird", I was super excited to share the story of Harper Lee's life with children. I already knew her life story, so I was disappointed to find this book to be basically a timeline of her life and a few important events. There was an expectation that the reader already knew the story and why Harper Lee was important, which a 5, 7 and 9 year old did not. They listened with curiosity in the beginning. As the book progressed, I watched the confusion grow in their faces and finally, disinterest. " said.

"I had high expectations for this book, but it unfortunately fell as flat as the authors bad “southern” similes scattered through out. As an Alabamian who grew up reading(and teaching) TKAM and visiting Monroeville I just felt this could have been such a good teaching tool and introduction to Lee for my children. If one was not familiar with TKAM(which what young elementary student is?) then this book wouldn’t make much sense. The author assumes the reader has prior knowledge, and for an adult that is fine, but for the targeted audience they don’t have that knowledge. Just could have been such a promising book" said.

"I have fond memories of reading To Kill a Mockingbird when I was young. So, I was excited to read this picture book about Nelle Harper Lee. As an adult reader, I loved learning more about Lee and her connection to Capote, and I think the author and illustrator created a beautiful text. However, the intended audience is 4-8 year olds, and I'm having a hard time imagining how a young reader could relate to the historical context of the book, the images that conjure memories of Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch, or the quotes from the novel embedded throughout. Perhaps it would be more suited to a teacher read aloud at the middle or high school level when students are experiencing To Kill a Mockingbird for the first time." said.

"The illustrations are the best part of this book—some
With lots of details and others more sparse to reflect the emotions at that time in the story. I knew the story already and didn’t learn anything new, but as the target age group is 4-8 years old, it seems appropriate. Both of my daughters would have loved this story at that age range. The one illustration that seems “off” is when Harper is walking by a line of black people and the writing describes how whites and blacks were segregated. She was born just three years earlier and looks too old to have been noticing the lines and the segregation—i just feel like it would have been fine without her walking in the background...or maybe to not have listed the year 1929, but state only about the impact of the Great Depression.

Adults who love To Kill a Mockingbird would probably love sharing this book with their child.
" said.

" Another one toward my 2018 goal of reading 12 picture book biographies of women! " said.

" For the intended audience, this book is well done. It nicely simplifies Lee's complicated life. " said.

" A great picture book for To Kill a Mockingbird loving parents to read to their littles! " said.

October 2018 New Book:

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