Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird

“The house was low, was once white with a deep front porch and green shutters, but had long ago darkened to the color of the slate-gray yard around it. Rain-rotted shingles drooped over the eaves of the veranda; oak trees kept the sun away. The remains of a picket drunkenly guarded the front yard – a “swept” yard that was never swept – where johnson grass and rabbit-tobacco grew in abundance.”

Can’t you see that old crooked fence half standing around the unkempt yard? Boo Radley’s house says a lot about him as written by Harper Lee in To Kill A Mockingbird. Her word choice in these sentences of darkened, drooped, drunkenly all add to the mystery the neighboring children feel about this house and its inhabitant. This classic American novel from 1960 is a good re-read.

I had another entry last Wednesday (Zadie Smith’s On Beauty) about a house described almost as if it were a character. What other books feature houses as a “character”?

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