At midnight, The Guardian and The Wall Street Journal released the first chapter of Harper Lee’s Go Set A Watchman, Lee’s first book since 1960’s To Kill A Mockingbird.
The novel was announced in February to both wild excitement and deep skepticism. Lee, who has maintained fierce privacy for more than five decades, has still seen controversy in the past few years. In 2013, she sued her agent for allegedly swindling her out of the copyright to To Kill A Mockingbird. This year, she was the subject of a biography that she claimed she did not authorize. After Go Set A Watchman was announced, rumors surfaced that Lee’s lawyer was working against her wishes, and that HarperCollins was possibly publishing the book without Lee’s approval. The book itself was written in the ’60s, but has remained hidden until recently.
Despite all this, Go Set A Watchman will hit stores next Tuesday. Until then, the first chapter is available on The Guardian, where you can also listen to Reese Witherspoon reading it.