Monday, April 18, 2011

To Kill a Mockingbird

This weekend was our second official meeting of our book and movie club. For almost a year now, myself and a few friends have been getting together each month for a girl's movie night. It has become so important to me, and I really look forward to the time spent with my friends.

For awhile we talked about turning the movie night into a book club too. We thought it would be fun to all read the same book, and then get together for discussion. Our first book we all read together was The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett. It wasn't our first choice; it just happened to be recommended by the library for their "Big Read" this past fall. We all won a prize for finishing among the first 20 people in Topeka, and my friend won the grand prize, which included the movie that went along with the book. After seeing the movie, and reading the book, I can with my whole heart not recommend the story. It may be popular literature, however I didn't enjoy it.

At our meeting we have a couple of boxes full of movie and book suggestions. We choose out of the book box first. That way if there's a movie that goes along with the book, we can just plan on watching it. So far, all our books have been made into movies. But I'm sure we'll eventually find that it's not always the case.

This past month we all read To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Last year the book celebrated its 50th anniversary! To Kill a Mockingbird is very well known and read by everyone. I remember reading it in high school for the first time. Something I found out that was interesting to me, the book's initial title was Atticus, and later was renamed to reflect more than just a character.


The book is written from the perspective of Scout, a young girl who grows up in Alabama during the Great Depression. It tells of her life adventures with her brother, Jem. The main plot of the story is centered on the girl's father, Atticus, who is defending a black man accused of raping a white woman. Because of this, the children are subject to abuse by various individuals in the small town.

It's very well written, but a little hard to get into at the beginning. However, once you're caught up in the story, it can be hard to put down.

As we got together to watch the movie, we first had to take a fun trivia quiz. I thought I would share the questions with you, but I won't provide you with the answers. You have to read the book and figure them out for yourself.

1) What foreign statement stated in the book could be considered a reference to Kansas?

2) Which of the following is a scuppernong?
A. A southern vegetable dish
B. Grapes
C. Songbird
D. Farming tool

3) Which of the following items was NOT found in the tree hole?
A. Soap dolls
B. A rusty metal
C. Chewing gum
D. Whistle
E. 2 Indian head pennies

4) What insect did Jem stop Scout from squishing?
A. Roly Poly
B. Ant
C. Spider
D. Butterfly

5) How did Tom Robinson injure his arm?

6) What was Atticus' favorite saying?

7) What was the matter with Mrs. Dubose when Jem was reading to her?

8) Why is it a sin to kill a mockingbird?

9) What was the nickname that the adults knew Atticus by that put his children in awe of him?

Bonus Question:
The NRA stands for National Rifle Association now, what does the acronym NRA stand for in the book?
This answer is not explained in the book, you would have had to look it up yourself.

We always come up with something fun to eat together, and this time was ice cream sundaes. We each brought our favorite topping to share. Funny thing... almost everyone's favorite topping was strawberries. We had PLENTY to go around!


Just for fun as we were decorating our sundaes we decided to make it a contest. Who could make the prettiest sundae? These are just a couple examples.



It was a very fun educational evening. Our next book we will be reading and discussing is Persuasion by Jane Austen. Since this book was a suggestion by me, I get to make the trivia quiz for my friends.

"First of all," he said, "if you can learn a simple trick, Scout, you'll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… until you climb into his skin and walk around in it." "
-Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird, spoken by the character Atticus

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