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(Victoria, BC – 25 April 2006) As Harper Lee celebrates her 80th birthday later this week, her one and only novel, To Kill A Mockingbird, remains ingrained in the American psyche, according to a visitor poll by that reveals many booklovers have read the classic more than five times.

The survey on - the world’s largest online marketplace for new, used, rare and out-of-print books – revealed a deep attachment to the novel:

  • 31 per cent have read the book five times or more;
  • 83 per cent own a copy;
  • 41 per cent believe it is the most influential novel in modern American literature.

Harper Lee will be 80 on 28 April and her Pulitzer Prize-winning story of racism and growing up in America’s South, originally published in 1960, was the 16th best-selling title at Abebooks in 2005. It remains a fixture on many other bestseller lists. also asked its visitors why they thought the woman behind one of the most acclaimed and successful books of modern times had only written one novel. The wide variety of responses included:

  • A handful who thought the reclusive author had died;
  • Many who believed she knew To Kill a Mockingbird could never be bettered;
  • A significant number who stated Truman Capote had ‘ghosted’ the book and was not about to repeat the favor;
  • Those who thought she did not want the fame and celebrity;
  • And people who believed authors only have one great book ‘in them.’

To Kill A Mockingbird remains one of the bestselling books on our site for good reason,” said Lisa Stevens, VP of Marketing at “Many people simply think modern literature does not come any better than this and will re-read this book again and again. The book’s illustration of racism is still relevant today.” polled 512 visitors.


About is the world's largest online marketplace for books, with over 80 million new, used, rare, and out-of-print titles listed for sale by more than 13,500 independent booksellers from around the world. Abebooks has millions of customers who purchase up to 20,000 books a day from its 5 global websites. A true internet success story, Abebooks has been selling books online since 1996, and is a private company based in Victoria, BC Canada, with offices in Germany and Spain. Internet Retailer magazine ranked Abebooks at No. 58 among North American online retailers in June 2005.

Richard Davies, PR Manager,
Phone (001) 250 412 3238 /