Reese Witherspoon to Narrate New Harper Lee Novel

Oscar winner will narrate the audiobook of "Go Set a Watchman."

— -- Reese Witherspoon is set to narrate the audiobook edition of Harper Lee's much-anticipated new novel, "Go Set a Watchman," which is scheduled to come out July 14, the publisher said today.

"The publication of Harper Lee’s 'Go Set a Watchman' is the literary event of the year, and Reese Witherspoon’s extraordinary talent and southern roots make her the perfect narrator," Sean McManus, senior director of HarperAudio, a division of HarperCollins said in a statement. "This is an audiobook destined to become a classic, joining the ranks of our award-winning audio edition of 'To Kill a Mockingbird.'"

Fellow Oscar winner Sissy Spacek narrated Lee's first book, "To Kill a Mockingbird."

Witherspoon said in a statement that she was honored to voice characters who inspired her as a child.

"As a Southerner, it is an honor and privilege to give voice to the Southern characters who inspired my childhood love of reading, Scout and Atticus Finch," the "Hot Pursuit" star said. "I am eager for readers to be transported to a pivotal time in American history in the manner that only Harper Lee's gorgeous prose can deliver."

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author surprised fans when she announced earlier this year that she had recovered the manuscript for "Go Set a Watchman," which she wrote in the 1950s prior to "Mockingbird."

In "Go Set a Watchman," Scout, the main character in "Mockingbird," returns to Maycomb, Alabama, to visit her father, Atticus, and she is "forced to grapple with issues both personal and political as she tries to understand her father's attitude toward society, and her own feelings about the place where she was born and spent her childhood," Lee said in a statement.