Shortly after her death, Harper Lee's heirs kill cheap paperback edition of To Kill a Mockingbird

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Or, you know, just get a used one from a local book store (college book stores often have it in stock) or order it off of ebay or Amazon used. I saw dozens of copies for under $5 shipped.


I’m not sure what the implication here is. That Lee had a line to the effect “I want to jack up the price of my book after I die”?

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One copy isn’t the point. You can’t teach a course with only one copy. Since they’re liquidating, I’m tempted to buy a case and donate it to the local high school.


But there are like millions of copies out there. It is one of the easiest books to buy cheap used. Yes, I agree $15 is high, but at the same time a lot of time in High Schools, they use the same books over and over (they did in my school), you don’t need to buy new ones every year. And I guess if you get to the college level the $15 is so cheap compared to the other books you have to buy, it won’t even register (and again, used books at the college book stores are constantly recycled).

Yes it is a dick move by the heirs. But oh well.

If I wanted to make a scathing comment though, I’d mention that the money should go to Capote’s heirs. (I know he doesn’t have heirs, and probably didn’t write the book.)


I can’t imagine why she’d do that, so I conject it’s more a move by the family to cash in on the sales boost her death will bring and the conclusion of the contract that Lee had. More of a fidouchiary responsibility by the now very interested parties.


I know it’s not a solution for everyone, but for any teacher wanting a classroom’s quantity, has them for pretty cheap, plus about $3 each to ship:


The problem being is that if you are teaching a class, you generally want to have everyone using the same edition, which is difficult if you are trying to be frugal and have everyone use secondhand books. This prevents problems with being assigned to read pp 15-45 and write about it, making sure everyone in the class is literally on the same page. Some editions also have commentary or questions for discussion; not all editions are equal. Anyway, this particular dick move just put another financial burden on anyone who wants to use it in a class.


Joke’s on them when there’s a surge in used sales for the school. Thanks to First Sale, they’ll end up getting $0.00 per copy instead. At my local HPB this last weekend, I saw dozens of copies of this and other popular school literature books.


Depending on the book, I guess the teacher can assign chapters rather than pages and give students a handout with questions. But yes, it’s an unnecessary pain in the ass when it seems to be purely so the heirs can make more cash off a beloved classic.


This has solidified my opinion more than ever that copyright should die with the author.


I’m prepared to be generous. Allow copyright to persist until the author’s youngest child reaches the age of 18.

Did she have any children?


But, if it’s assigned every year by the school they should already have copies. No school is out there getting new copies of any books every year.

Oh I think the end of her life was filled with the joy. Poor Harper.

Not if it’s a college class. There you have to buy your own.

College classes should not be assigning by page number. And if they are, college students should be smart enough to figure out what they need to read to.

If I was in college there’s no way I buy a novel like this from the bookstore at $15 when I can find a used copy anywhere for three bucks.

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This story might shed some light on the situation.


“But oh well” isn’t a response I’m prepared to live with.

I like “How can we stop the next dick move by the next heirs to an important work of fiction from happening?” better


And stop the shameless looting of Grandma’s legacy? Why do you hate America?


Not every year, but mass-market paperbacks do not have long lifespan with multiple students reading them, highlighting/noting in them, and while being toted around in backpacks.