May 28, 2010

Harper Lee, Truman Capote, and To Kill A Mockingbird

My all-favorite book is To Kill A Mockingbird and it is the only book I've ever read more than once [someday I hope to come back to The Stand and see it is as awesome as I remember when I was 16.] I didn't realize that the book's author, Harper Lee, had a card in last year's Topps American Heritage Heroes Edition [which is a lot like CSI: Reno Special Victims Unit] until recently and so I tracked down a copy from The photo is from one of Lee's rare public appearances to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom [one of the lamest names of an award ever] in 2007.

2009 Topps American Heritage Heroes Edition #MOF-13 Harper Lee Medal of Freedom

Not too shabby for a person who published only one book. Which brings me to what I really want to write about, the idea that Truman Capote really wrote To Kill A Mockingbird. This idea is mainly fostered by the fact that Harper Lee didn't/hasn't published any works since TKAM was published in 1960. Plus the fact that her closest friend was a world famous author and she collaborated on his most famous work In Cold Blood. I've never really believed it and in personal letters Capote sent to relatives before TKAM was released he wrote glowingly about "Harper's book." I'm sure he edited and collaborated with her, as she did with him, but I don't doubt Harper Lee wrote it.

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