There is no real way of measuring the books we love the most. It’s like measuring the love one has for family and friends: there will be different choices for every stage of your life, and different degrees of attachment. As every reader knows, reading is intensely personal, and the books you love change you and stay with you in ways that even a lover will not. But if there’s one book that comes up every time we talk about the books we love, that would be To Kill A Mockingbird, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year…
For readers like me, it is easier to understand Mockingbird’s appeal than to explain it. I go back to this book, along with a small handful of classics, not just to admire its craft and precision, but as a kind of touchstone: the way I respond to Lee’s story of childhood, injustice and inner strength with the passing years shifts and changes, reflecting shifts in my own personal values over the years.