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February 03, 2015


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Steve L.

I appreciate the shout-out, Al, but I plan to wait and see along with everyone else.


Derek Tokaz

I got to meet Harper Lee at a luncheon at the University of Alabama my senior year. She said I didn't look old enough to be out of grade school. She could of at least added the customary "bless your heart."

Al Brophy

Derek, when did you graduate from Alabama? I'm guessing we were there at the same time.

Derek Tokaz

Class of 2005. I started the same year as the 6 game Iron Bowl drought. I apologize for that.

Al Brophy

We were there at the same time. Those were tough times for football, for sure.

I remember that Harper Lee spoke or at least met with students a few times in my early years there. I think 2005 must have been close to the end of her visits to the capstone. Might even have been the last.

Dan Joyner

Hey Al, Interesting story this morning on NPR on the question of whether Lee really wants this manuscript to be published.

Al Brophy

Dan. Thanks for the link to Wayne Flynt's interview on NPR about Watchman. I hadn't heard it.

Flynt, who is probably the leading historian of Twentieth century Alabama, said he visited her the day before the new novel was announced and she didn't talk about it, which is sort of surprising. And I'd think somewhat inconsistent with his statement that she has mental capacity to consent to the publication. But then again, maybe that's consistent with Ms. Lee's well-known interest in maintaining her privacy.

This link reminded me of an NPR story from a few years back where Flynt commented on a rumor that Truman Capote rather than Harper Lee had written Mockingbird.
The occasion of the interview was the discovery of a letter from Capote to a family member that praised the novel but didn't claim authorship, or even credit for helping write or edit the novel. Flynt also makes the important point that Lee's voice and Capote's are quite different. I suspect that this new novel will further put to rest the Capote rumor.

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