Harper Lee’s estate is supporting the release.

By Nora Horvath
Updated June 07, 2017
Considered by many to be one of the best novels of the 20th century (it won the 1961 Pulitzer Prize, after all), Harper Lee’s story of a white lawyer fighting for the justice of a black man, has faced many challengers over the years for its subject matter, profane language, and racial slurs. In 1966, the Hanover County School Board in Virginia voted to remove all copies of the book from the county’s school libraries because they deemed it “immoral literature.” When Lee heard of the motion, she responded with a letter that was published by The Richmond News Leader. “Recently I have received echoes down this way of the Hanover County School Board's activities, and what I've heard makes me wonder if any of its members can read,” she wrote. “Surely it is plain to the simplest intelligence that To Kill a Mockingbird spells out in words of seldom more than two syllables a code of honor and conduct, Christian in its ethic, that is the heritage of all Southerners.” She sure did have a way with words.To buy: $9, amazon.com.

Good news for Harper Lee fans: In 2018, 58 years after the classic story’s initial release, To Kill A Mockingbird will be re-released as a graphic novel.

For those who haven’t read the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, it explores the themes of civil rights and racism during the Great Depression in the United States through the eyes of young Scout and Jem Finch. In 2015, Lee released a second novel, Go Set a Watchman, based around the same characters as in her debut novel. While the publisher promoted it as a sequel to the original story, Go Set a Watchman was actually the first draft of what would become Lee’s famed novel.

It was the Harper Lee estate that approached William Heinemann, a publishing imprint of Penguin Random House, about creating the graphic novel. This is only one of a group of projects that have been in the works following Lee’s death in February 2016. Another project in the works is an initiative in Lee’s hometown to create tourist attractions based on the book.

The illustrations will be done by Fred Fordham, a London-born artist who most recently illustrated The Adventures of John Blake: Mystery of the Ghost Ship, by Philip Pullman, which was released last month. Fordham’s adaptation will stay incredibly close to the original story, reports The Guardian.

The graphic novel will be published in November 2018. Until then, you can catch up by reading the original To Kill a Mockingbird and Go Set a Watchman, both available on Amazon.