Mockingbird Songs: A New Chapter from Harper Lee

Wayne Flynt Interview with the author of Mockingbird Songs

Professor Wayne FlyntMockingbird Songs: A New Chapter from Harper Lee

Wayne Flynt, the renowned expert on culture in the Southern United States and Professor Emeritus at Auburn University, has created a wonderful tribute to the beloved author Harper Lee, and her fans are clamoring to read the new work.  Last year, Flynt announced his decision to publish a collection of letters between himself and the iconic Lee.  Those letters will include a wealth of correspondence written between 1992 and February, 2016 when Lee passed away.  Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee may well be the final publication of words written by Harper Lee.

Mockingbird Songs: An Intimate Look into the Relationship between the Authors

Wayne Flynt chose to make the history of Alabama the focal point of his career after reading To Kill a Mockingbird, Lee’s first book and a work that took the world by storm when it delved into the moral and political dynamics of a fictional town in Alabama during the 1930s.  Maycomb, AL, was based on Lee’s home town of Monroeville, and Flynt immediately recognized the contribution of Lee’s work and the impact it would have.  When Flynt eventually became a respected friend of the Lee family, a relationship of admiration between the two authors was forged.  What makes that relationship indelible is that much of it is chronicled in the letters between them.

Mockingbird Songs: A Fitting Tribute to a Woman Who Changed the World

Flynt is now offering the collection of letters that he has long cherished to the rest of the world.  The first comes from a time when Lee was still residing in New York, while others trace a developing friendship as it becomes a lifelong relationship.  Mockingbird Songs will be published May 2, 2017, and is another—and likely the final–opportunity for Harper Lee fans to read her wit, wisdom and candor in her own words.

Mockingbird Songs: Available Soon

At Ol’ Curiosities, we look forward to Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee  and again celebrating the hometown author we love. Order your certified keepsake copy today.

Mockingbird Songs by Wayne Flynt

Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee
Wayne Flynt and Harper Lee. Flynt is holding his granddaughter, Harper, who’s named in Lee's honor. Photo by James Hansen, originally published by PBS.org
Wayne Flynt and Harper Lee. Flynt is holding his granddaughter, Harper, who’s named in Lee’s honor. Photo by James Hansen, originally published by PBS.org

Wayne Flynt, Professor Emeritus at Auburn University, and an expert on Southern culture, poverty, religions in the South, and politics of the South and Alabama, has created a beautiful tribute to one of the most beloved American writers of all time, and he has done so in a way few expected—he’s published a collection of letters between his friend and fellow author, Harper Lee, and himself, written between 1992 and Lee’s death in February, 2016.  It is to be titled, Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee.

Mockingbird Songs: About Author Wayne Flynt

Born on October 4, 1940 in Potonoc, Mississippi, to a teacher and a salesman, Wayne Flynt holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Samford University (formerly Howard College), and a Masters of Science and Doctorate degree from Florida State University.  He is also the editor-in-chief for the online Encyclopedia of Alabama, sponsored by Auburn University and the Alabama Humanities Foundation.

In addition to Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee and other works, Flynt has previously published Poor But Proud: Alabama’s Poor Whites (1990), Alabama in the 20th Century (2006), and Alabama: A History of the Deep South State (2010). He is considered one of the foremost authorities on the American South and specifically, Alabama. Poor But Proud and A History of the Deep South were both nominated for Pulitzer Prizes.

Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper LeeAt one point, Wayne Flynt left Alabama based at least in part on his feelings about the violence that transpired during a haunting era of the American South, but even more important was Flynt’s later decision to make Alabama’s history the focal point of his career after reading a book by a never-before-published Alabama author, Harper Lee.  Flynt eventually became a friend of the Lee family, well respected by sisters Louise, Alice, and Nelle (Harper), and the two writers stayed in touch for years.

Mockingbird Songs: A Look into the Life of the Author We Lost

The intimate correspondence detailed between Flynt and Lee in Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee, which began at a time when Harper Lee was still residing in New York, begins fairly formally, according to the publisher, but traces the growth of a friendship that stood the tests of years, fame, health concerns, and social issues.  It will be published May 2, 2017, and documents a 25-year friendship between the two writers and their families.  The result is a work through which Lee’s fans will understand her better and learn more about her in her very own words.

Mockingbird Songs: A Celebration

At Ol’ Curiosities, we believe that Mockingbird Songs: My Friendship with Harper Lee will be nothing less than a celebration of one of the most prominent American authors of all time, and we want to celebrate its release accordingly.  Stay tuned for some exciting announcements to follow in the next few weeks.