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Editorial Reviews

Norman Dietz’s resonant voice, and his affable delivery, makes him the ideal actor to perform the spirited memoir Roughing It: A Personal Narrative by writer Mark Twain. This entertaining travelogue explores a seven-year journey through the wilderness of the American west. The original plan had been a mere three-month excursion to tour silver mines. Twain traveled with his brother Orion Clemens - the Secretary of Nevada Territory - and derived much humor from their adventures in unfamiliar landscapes and situations.
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Publisher's Summary

"If there is any life that is happier than the life we led on our timber ranch, it must be the sort of life which I have not read of in books or experienced in person," wrote Mark Twain, and now you can share in that experience. The beloved American humorist spent seven years on a "pleasure trip" through the untamed wilderness of Nevada. Twain intended to spend three months touring silver mines, but the lure of rough terrain and comfortable clothes proved irresistible - as will this vibrant travelogue.
(P)1987 by Recorded Books, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Tad Davis on 04-21-08

Hilarious

For some reason I missed "Roughing It" in my earlier attempts at reading all of Mark Twain. My loss: it's an absolutely hilarious journey, part factual reporting, part tall tale in the best western campfire tradition. (If you're familiar with the omitted "raft chapter" in "Huckleberry Finn," you know what to expect.) One of Twain's greatest strengths is his willingness to include himself among the objects of genial mockery. This is Mark Twain the Humorist at his best.

I didn't find the problems with audio quality that others reported. I agree that Fraley's recording of "Huckleberry Finn" is a superior piece of work, but Norman Dietz does a great job on this one. He's droll, unassuming, loquacious, and endearing, and he adopts one of a variety of other voices at the drop of a hat. My one complaint would be a certain breathiness of delivery -- occasional rapid delivery punctuated by sharp intakes of breath. I think this is partly a matter of recording age and technology: I find that occurring less often on more recent audiobooks. In any case, for an audiobook that gave me this much pleasure, I have to give it five stars.

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13 of 13 people found this review helpful


By D. MacLeod on 02-05-04

Funny and Entertaining

I don't know why this book is not more known or read. It probably is the definitive book on the sights and sounds of the Old West, certainly moreso than the Westerns I've read. I laughed out loud listening to it, causing a bit of a stir among fellow airplane passengers.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Rowan on 07-03-10

Loved it

Had me in stitches as i listened to him while i was fishing.Has such a timeless way with words and read superbly

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful


By John on 09-23-09

A definitive travel piece and a whole lot more!

Like all of Mark Twain's books this is a classic. He paints a very descriptive picture of his seven year adeventure filled with humour, sadness, compassion, greed and the betrayal it causes. From start the listener feels that he/she is taking every step with Twain sharing his highs and lows. A favourite of mine is when he buys a horse that did the milk run then uses it go on a date with hilairous results, this is just one of the many humourous stories scattered throughout the book. I found nothing to dislike about this book other than it occasionally dirfted off to an anicdote which had a loose connection to the story. Despite this I would give it fullmarks, 5/5.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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