I am proud to review Mark Twain’s Classic “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” today. If you haven’t read this book, please grab a copy right away and read it.
Book Title: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer By Mark Twain
First published in 1876, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is widely perceived as a children’s adventure story. The specialty of this book is that it revolves around the adventures of a young adolescent boy around the mid-nineteenth century, which is something that will appeal to everyone who reads the book, regardless of their age. For the adult reader, the story is reminiscent of his or her own childhood and for the child, a series of fun episodes he or she yearns to be a part of.
A quick synopsis
Tom Sawyer is young, imaginative and mischievous and lives with his Aunt Polly and half-brother Sid in a Mississippi town. The story opens with Tom’s Aunt Polly looking for Tom to question him about some missing jam. He gets in trouble at school and as punishment, has to spend his Saturday whitewashing her fence while his friends are enjoying themselves. But the clever Tom convinces his friends that it is a fun job – and they end up trading stuff with him to get a chance to whitewash the fence.
A young girl, Becky Thatcher moves into town and Tom falls in love with her. They have a tiff and Tom is off to the town graveyard with his best friend Huckleberry Finn, where they witness the wicked Injun Joe murder Doctor Robinson. When this comes to light, Injun Joe blames Muff Potter. Obviously this is too much for a young Tom to take, and he is afraid to tell what he knows.
He, Huck and their friend Joe Harper decide to become pirates and camp on an island in the river. When they come to know that Aunt Polly thinks they are all dead and a funeral is planned, they return home in a hurry. Once back, Tom feels braver and decides to testify against Injun Joe, who escapes from the law.
Without adding spoilers, I’d like to highlight the main scenes, which, besides the whitewashed fence, include the Sunday school episode, Tom and his friend Becky Thatcher getting lost in a cave, the graveyard scene with Tom and Huck Finn, Tom and Huck witnessing a murder, and their association with Injun Joe, followed by their hunt for his treasure. Each scene ties in with the overall story, building a vibrant picture of the lives of the various characters in the book.
Mark Twain (1835-1910) is a master at weaving words with wit and he tells the story of the young Tom Sawyer. Through the book, you will sense the moral, psychological and intellectual development of Tom, its central character. A beautifully written story, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer combines the past with the present in a way that the reader will personally identify with. The book speaks of life in the Mississippi River town where Twain himself spent his youth.
In this book you will experience a strong dose of humor, a lot of nostalgia, the innocence of childhood, superstitions, murder, revenge and slavery – all of which are ingredients for a classic story. Twain also wrote “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” a series of episodes related to the adventure to free the slave Jim.
If you are an adult reading the book, you will sense the typically Twain satire that runs through the story criticizing the eccentricities and hypocrisies of human nature.
The overall tone of the book is obviously humorous. For children reading the book, the adventures are quite exciting. Although this book is believed to be for young adults and adults, I remember reading the “whitewashing of the fence” in middle school in an English text book. The book is in narrative style, by an adult who sees the world cynically yet sentimentally when he dwells on his childhood with nostalgia.
Interesting: The Table of contents is followed by a timeline of Mark Twain’s life.
Suitable for age group: Recommended for everyone who is ten years and older.
Rating: Must-read. Five out of Five stars. Classics like these are hard to come by!
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