The Adventures of Mark Twain by Huckleberry Finn
The Adventures of Mark Twain by Huckleberry Finn
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Annotation: Presents a biography of author Mark Twain, as told from the perspective of one of his most famous fictional characters, Huckleberry Finn.
Genre: Biographies
Catalog Number: #44791
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Inventory Sale Inventory Sale
Copyright Date: 2011
Edition Date: 2011
Illustrator: Blitt, Barry,
Pages: 48
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-689-83041-6 Perma-Bound: 0-605-44073-5
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-689-83041-9 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-44073-9
Dewey: 921
LCCN: 2010006512
Dimensions: 29 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
The neat switcheroo in this picture-book biography has the story of Mark Twain's life told by one of his most endearing characters, Huck Finn. As one might expect, Huck isn't the most articulate of narrators ("I ain't no highfalutin' talker"), and he would probably rather be doing just about anything else: "This ain't intendin' to be some windy biografy. I don't lean much to writin', and I don't fetch to books much neither, 'specially long ones." Although Huck's narration is almost overwhelmingly folksy, his undeniably cheery tone is infectious. He succinctly traces Clemens' life from a boyhood romping around the shores of the Mississippi to his odd-jobbing endeavors as a steamboat captain, newspaper reporter, soldier, and prospector until he finally finds his true calling, as a "for-real writer," and becomes one of the most famous men in the world. Blitt, a frequent New Yorker cartoonist, provides jaunty, cartoony pen-and-watercolor artwork, with exaggerated, tall-tale figures and period charm aplenty. Just the biography to reinforce, or even introduce, Twain's stature as a nearly mythological figure in American letters.
Horn Book
This picture book biography, covering Twain's varied adventures, from riverboating to writing to performing (as well as his markedly sad last years), complicates the narrative by having Huck ("You don't know about me, without you have read a book by the name of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer") tell the story. Soft-hued, often humorous watercolor and ink art helps readers navigate the text.
Kirkus Reviews
Sam was born excited. He did stuff. He tramped and skylarked and poked his shovel into whatever tripped his fancy." If that sounds like how the fictional character Huckleberry Finn would describe his creator, Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), then author Burleigh has at least nailed Huck-speak in this unorthodox picture-book biography for older Twainophiles. The "editors' " "Warning to the Reader" about the impending "ain'ts" and potentially confusing folksy expressions only calls attention to the dicey premise and begs the question, "Who is this for?" That said, Blitt's lovely, lively pen, ink and watercolors inventively illustrate Huck's affectionate, time-traveling, tour guide's view of Twain's life. A giant-headed Huck looks through a window, Ghost of Christmas Past–style, examining 11-year-old Sam, who's gazing forlornly at a picture of his late Pap, for instance. Huck journeys from Twain's Mississippi-loving, school-phobic boyhood years to his steamboat days to his "honest-to-goodness writer" career, to his family life, through hard times when he was "dead-for-earnest broke," to his death. At the end is another "editor's" note and timeline: "Since Mr. Finn's manuscript contains no dates and leaves out some important details." Huck says this "ain't intendin' to be some windy bioografy," and it isn't. It's a breezy homage to Twain's life and literary world that will please some, aggravate some and utterly baffle others. (Picture book/biography. 10 & up)
Publishers Weekly
This playful biography of Mark Twain-narrated by his most famous of characters, Huckleberry Finn-begs to be read aloud with a backwoods twang. "Him bein' an author, you might 'spect he went to one of them fancy-pants schools people brag about. Heck, Sam hardly went to school at all! He growed up bein' poor, same as me, in a dusty village," declares Huck. Blitt (What's the Weather Inside?) contributes whimsical caricatures in pen, ink, and watercolor; a cherubic and ruddy-faced Huck, with a straw hat and a mop of hair over one eye, appears in each spread, appearing to play the dichotomous role of peeping tom and guardian angel (in one scene, he sprawls on a light fixture watching Twain write Huck's adventures as small cartoon figures of the characters paddle a raft right across Twain's pages). Enlarged and varied typefaces, used for emphasis and headings, may initially distract, but, as with the dialect, add to the delight. Burleigh's (Good-bye, Sheepie) book highlights the life of a great American author and is sure to whet readers' appetites for more about its straight-talking narrator. Ages 7-10. (Mar.)
School Library Journal Starred Review
Gr 4&11;8&12; What would Huck Finn have to say about his creator? Burleigh and Blitt take an unusual perspective in this picture-book biography. In Huck's colloquial voice, a portrait of Twain emerges that is engaging, accessible, and highly original. From his boyhood on the Mississippi, through his riverboat days, his writing and public speaking careers, and his adult family life, the main points of the writer's life are covered. Blitt's humorous illustrations are a perfect match for the tall-tale-inspired text. Rendered in pen, ink, and watercolor, the caricature style suits both Huck's voice and Twain's life. The muted blues and browns of the palette have an old-fashioned quality that amplifies the 19th-century setting. The cover illustration, of Huck on a book "raft" paddling with a fountain pen, cleverly demonstrates the book's premise. Although children will be entertained by the account, the most enthusiastic audience may be students familiar with Twain's work. One does not need to know Huck's story to understand Twain's, but doing so will increase appreciation for the ingenious nature of this collaboration.&12; Lucinda Snyder Whitehurst, St. Christopher's School, Richmond, VA
Word Count: 2,444
Reading Level: 4.3
Interest Level: 2-5
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.3 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 143591 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:4.6 / points:2.0 / quiz:Q52029
Lexile: AD750L

Everyone knows the story of the raft on the Mississippi and that ol' whitewashed fence, but now it’s time for youngins everywhere to get right acquainted with the man behind the pen. Mr. Mark Twain! An interesting character, he was...even if he did sometimes get all gussied up in linen suits and even if he did make it rich and live in a house with so many tiers and gazebos that it looked like a weddin’ cake. All that’s a little too proper and hog tied for our narrator, Huckleberry Finn, but no one is more right for the job of telling this picture book biography than Huck himself. (We’re so glad he would oblige.) And, he’ll tell you one thing—that Mr. Twain was a piece a work! Famous for his sense of humor and saying exactly what’s on his mind, a real satirist he was—perhaps America’s greatest. Ever. True to Huck’s voice, this picture book biography is a river boat ride into the life of a real American treasure.

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