To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee: Summary & Notes

Rating: 9/10

Available at: Amazon

Related: Lord of the Flies, The Catcher in the Rye


The classic story of a young girl's childhood growing up in 1930s Alabama, where her father is a lawyer tasked with defending a falsely-accused black man.

I read this in high school, but appreciated it so much more upon re-reading. A beautiful book full of lessons on parenting, equality, justice (and injustice) and what it means to be a good person.


  • “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”
  • "There are just some kind of men who—who’re so busy worrying about the next world they’ve never learned to live in this one, and you can look down the street and see the results.”
  • I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do.
  • Atticus was right. One time he said you never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them. Just standing on the Radley porch was enough.
  • You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view—” “Sir?” “—until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”
  • Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing.
  • "The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.”
  • “People in their right minds never take pride in their talents,” said Miss Maudie.

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