- Series: Illustrated Pocket Classics
- Publisher: Academic Industries (June 1984)
- ISBN-10: 9997262840
- ISBN-13: 978-9997262844
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 3,478 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,158,654 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Huckleberry Finn (Illustrated Pocket Classics)
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|Paperback, June, 1984||
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A seminal work of American Literature that still commands deep praise and still elicits controversy, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is essential to the understanding of the American soul. The recent discovery of the first half of Twain's manuscript, long thought lost, made front-page news. And this unprecedented edition, which contains for the first time omitted episodes and other variations present in the first half of the handwritten manuscript, as well as facsimile reproductions of thirty manuscript pages, is indispensable to a full understanding of the novel. The changes, deletions, and additions made in the first half of the manuscript indicate that Mark Twain frequently checked his impulse to write an even darker, more confrontational book than the one he finally published. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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The appeal of the book, particularly its 'story' for the average contemporary reader will be somewhat less. We might find the humor to be a bit 'rough and rustic.' Readers in Twain's lifetime made a similar complaint. 'Coarse' things like death, murder, mutilation and the like are plainly spoken of by and/or in front of a boy who is not yet an adolescent. Some times the humor is a bit 'rough and ready.' Twain, himself, is a product of his early experiences near or on the American Frontier.
Given that this is a major work in our literary history, what does an 'annotated edition' offer? The editor, Michael Patrick Hearn is generally cited as the foremost Twain scholar of his generation. He begins by offering a major body of information about Twain's life, his work as an author and lecturer, his trials and tribulations in bringing 'Huckleberry Finn' to the public, critical reaction to the work and so on. An 'appreciation' is offered of the work and its place in American Literature. This is only fitting and proper for this type of scholarly edition. It is done to my satisfaction and the result will be more than helpful to serious students of the book. A vast range of resources has been brought to bear in the annotations, including alternate texts of passages where they can be found in Twain's copious notes and draft manuscripts. Anyone who doubts that 'writing is work' will soon be disabused if they peruse these annotations, which appear close to the relevant passages in the text. Very generous attention is given to the illustrations provided with two major editions of the work, including other illustrations from Tom Sawyer. These illustrations were offered by two artists, one picked by Twain and the second one an artist Twain came to respect the more he looked at the work.
So why 'only' four stars? Even with some interest in the book, I was almost overcome by the information added to the text of the novel. Some of the annotations seemed to be less essential than others and might have been excluded without 'harm.' Mr. Hearn has gone the extra mile to be 'comprehensive' in documenting comments on the novel and in providing explanations of vernacular words or bits of cultural background from the time.