Mark Twain's classic novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
, tells the story of a teenaged misfit who finds himself floating on a raft down the Mississippi River with an escaping slave, Jim. In the course of their perilous journey, Huck and Jim meet adventure, danger, and a cast of characters who are sometimes menacing and often hilarious.
Though some of the situations in Huckleberry Finn are funny in themselves (the cockeyed Shakespeare production in Chapter 21 leaps instantly to mind), this book's humor is found mostly in Huck's unique worldview and his way of expressing himself. Describing his brief sojourn with the Widow Douglas after she adopts him, Huck says: "After supper she got out her book and learned me about Moses and the Bulrushers, and I was in a sweat to find out all about him; but by and by she let it out that Moses had been dead a considerable long time; so then I didn't care no more about him, because I don't take no stock in dead people." Underlying Twain's good humor is a dark subcurrent of Antebellum cruelty and injustice that makes The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn a frequently funny book with a serious message.
From Publishers Weekly
Considered the first great American novel, part of Finn's charm is the wisdom and sobering social criticism deftly lurking amongst the seemingly innocent observations of the uneducated Huck and the even-less-educated escaped slave, Jim. William Dufris's voice, unpretentious and disarming, like the book's main characters, seems the perfect armature on which to hang this literary strategy. Although he does an expert job with the entire cast, Dufris's delivery of Jim's dialogue is his crowning achievement. Out of context, Dufris's Jim might sound mocking and racist, due to his expert delivery of Twain's regional vernacular. Ignorance and intelligence, however, are not mutually exclusive, and taken as a whole, Jim's mind and heart come shining through, allowing the listener to reflect on their own assumptions. Tantor Media includes the entire text as a digital e-book on the final CD, a wise and thoughtful move in a market with swift and changing currents.
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