Chapter Summaries in To Kill a Mockingbird (10-15) Katie Shirley
Jem and Scout lament the fact that "Atticus was feeble: he was nearly fifty." The children believe that Atticus' "advanced" age keeps him from doing the sorts of things other children's fathers do. Their view of their father changes when they see him shoot a mad dog.
As Tom Robinson's trial grows closer, Jem and Scout endure more slurs against their father. When their neighbour Mrs. Dubose, a mean, elderly woman confined to a wheel chair, makes a particularly stinging remark, Jem retaliates by destroying some of her flowers. Of course, Atticus hears what happened and he makes Jem apologize to Mrs. Dubose, letting her decide his punishment. Jem is sentenced to read to Mrs. Dubose after school for one month. Scout chooses to accompany Jem. Shortly after Jem is relieved from duty, Mrs. Dubose dies. Only then does Atticus tell the children that Mrs. Dubose was very sick and fighting an extremely valiant battle against addiction.
As summer begins, Jem is now too old to be bothered by his little sister, which causes Scout great dismay. To add to Scout's disappointment, Dill won't be coming to Maycomb this summer, although Calpurnia eases her loneliness somewhat. With Atticus at a special session of the state legislature, Calpurnia takes the children to church with her. Upon their return from church, they find Aunt Alexandra waiting on the porch for them. She announces that at Atticus' request, she's coming to live with them for "a while." Aunt Alexandra goes to great pains to educate the children in the importance of the Finch breeding; going so far as to have Atticus deliver an uncharacteristic speech — a speech he ultimately recants — to Scout and Jem.
The impending trial of Tom Robinson and Atticus’s role as his defence lawyer