I Kill the Mockingbird – Paul Acampora

I Kill the Mockingbird – Paul Acampora

Title: I Kill the Mockingbird
Author: Paul Acampora
Genre: Junior Fiction
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Publication Date: 1st June 2015
Pages: 163
Rating: 5/5 stars

IKilltheMockingbird

WE FIGHT FOR THE BOOKS!

OUR GOAL: to make people excited about reading To Kill a Mockingbird.

OUR (somewhat questionable) METHODS: to make the book disappear (because wanting what you can’t have is the American Way, right?)

WHAT HAPPENS (depending on who you ask): a ukulele concert, a cure for cancer, flying caskets, Santa Claus with an ax, big league home runs, a million conspiracy theories … and a nationwide epidemic of vanishing novels!

We really meant for the whole thing to stay small. Or smallish. Or at least manageable. The World Wide Web had different ideas. But we regret nothing! We just didn’t expect it to get so big. Turns out love and books and a bus pass and the Internet are a volatile combination.

It was really this review by PaperFury which convinced me that I needed to get my hands on this glorious book. And I am so very very glad that I did! Feel-good, funny and just adorable, I Kill the Mockingbird is a perfect read for all ages, and particularly for fans of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird.

The story is middle grade – the main characters are about to start high school – but the whole story had a very mature feel, without becoming too sophisticated or leaping too far out of its age range.

Lucy and her two best friends, Elena and Michael are about to start high school. Their friendship was gloriously cute, and they all loved books! Elena’s uncle even owns a second-hand bookshop so they get to hang out with books all the time!

The trio’s favourite teacher, Fat Bob, had announced that To Kill a Mockingbird was the only book he expected his class to read over summer. However, after Fat Bob’s untimely death in the school cafeteria, his replacement gave the class a much longer list of choices. As a sort of tribute to Fat Bob, Lucy decided to make To Kill a Mockingbird the most desirable choice. And the best way to do that? Create a mystery. Initially the friends hid copies of TKAM, and then their blog went viral, causing a nation-wide movement. It all culminates in a massive party at the end. A party, not a mob, because:

It can’t be a mob if it comes with ukeleles.

The characters were all very mature. Lucy’s mother has just come home after a cancer battle. Lucy is constantly trying to make sure that her Mom looks after herself, and there is a little bit of tension. This particular part of the plot was really lovely, and Lucy’s Mom came out with this AMAZING line:

‘I’m not one of those people who think that cancer is some kind of jousting match. People live or die based on good medicine, good luck, and the grace of God. The people who die from it did not fail. The people who live will die another day.’

There are too many good quotes to mention them all here – my favourite bookish scenes didn’t get quoted purely because most of them take up more than a whole page!

While there is A LOT going on for the book’s 163 pages, it was just so GLORIOUS to read this book about kids loving books. And the whole thing was just a lot of FUN!

What classic would you ‘ban’ to attract more attention to its story?

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