Even before its release, Harper Lee's "Go Set a Watchman" has topped Amazon's best-selling list. It has also stirred speculation among some people who know the reclusive author about why the 88-year-old Lee agreed to release her first novel since "To Kill a Mockingbird, " AL.com reported.
"I don't think she agreed to do it. I think it's her attorney being greedy, because Ms. Lee was a very private person who didn't like a lot of publicity," said Janet Sawyer, owner of the Courthouse Café in Lee's hometown of Monroeville, Alabama, according to AL.com.
Sawyer told AL.com she used to frequently serve Lee and her sister until two years ago. Lee's 103-year-old sister, Alice, died in November, AL.com said.
Lee's long-time lawyer, Tonja Carter, has power of attorney over Lee's affairs and was behind the action, according to AL.com.
Speaking of the author, Sawyer told the news site: "She had a stroke several years ago and her mind is not in a condition to make these decisions, I don't think, personally. Tonja Carter doesn't allow her to see her friends anymore. She's isolated her from the world in order to manipulate her."
A person who answered the phone at Carter's office in Monroeville on Wednesday told CNBC the attorney is not commenting.