Harper Lee update: One state agency says the author "seems to be aware" of her book deal

There have been questions over whether the 88-year-old author was being manipulated

Published March 13, 2015 3:30PM (EDT)

Harper Lee       (AP/Penny Weaver)
Harper Lee (AP/Penny Weaver)

One of the agencies investigating whether or not 88-year-old author Harper Lee was manipulated into releasing her second novel, "Go Set a Watchman," has ended its inquiry, according to the New York Times.

The director of the Alabama Securities Commission, Joseph Borg, told the times that his investigators spoke to Lee. Borg told the Times that "she has opinions and seems to be aware of what is going on with her book and the book deal." One of the tasks of the Alabama Securities Commission is to attempt to "prevent financial fraud of the elderly," the Times reports. Borg said that his team is done with its part in the investigation.

Many were skeptical when Lee's second book -- her first in over 50 years -- was announced. Some worried about potential elder abuse being perpetrated against the "To Kill a Mockingbird" author, who is reportedly mostly deaf and blind, and resides in a nursing home in Monroeville, Alabama. Yet, her lawyer and publisher HarperCollins say she is excited about the book.

A larger investigation being done by the Alabama Department of Human Resources is ongoing.

By Sarah Gray

Sarah Gray is an assistant editor at Salon, focusing on innovation. Follow @sarahhhgray or email sgray@salon.com.

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Book Deal Elder Abuse Go Set A Watchman Harper Lee To Kill A Mockingbird