ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The author of one of the most influential novels has passed away, but her words will live on in the pages of one of the most loved and taught books in history.
Rebecca Lubin knows the power a book can hold.
“I love being a librarian,” she said. “It’s just the best job.”
After being a librarian for a decade, there’s one book she’s seen endure.
“A lot of people want to reread it when they get older because you get something out of it every time,” she said.
Harper Lee’s debut novel, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” achieved immediate success when it was published in 1960. It was about justice and race in a small, southern town.
Like most students in America, Lubin was assigned to read the novel in high school, and it had an impact.
“I grew up in the Northeast, so having this southern voice was very different from me,” she said.
After learning of Lee’s passing, Lubin pulled the book from the shelf at the North Albany branch of the public library to give it a prominent display. But not every branch could locate a copy of the famous novel.
“With Harper Lee dying, I can see in the computer system that a bunch of people check this book out today just based on the due date,” youth services librarian Alex Bernat said.
Bernat, at Albany’s main branch, sees books gain fleeting popularity, but she said “To Kill a Mockingbird” has lasting power.
“A lot of issues that it tackles like racism and integrity and courage are things that are still relevant today,” she said.
Lee’s second novel “Go Set a Watchman” is still on the New York Time’s bestseller list.
With Lee’s passing, Lubin thinks “To Kill a Mockingbird” may appear on the list again.