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Michael Shelden wrote "Man in White," about Twain's last years, and it's one of the best books about Mark Twain I've read. (It's available here on Audible.) Here he tackles the whole life, with a good number of works thrown in for good measure. It's a very clearly presented overview of Twain's life, very personal on Shelden's part -- it's clear that he loves Twain as a writer -- and his comments on the works are right on the money. My only regret is that he passed over Twain's late story "The Mysterious Stranger" in favor of "Is Shakespeare Dead?" -- an essay about the "authorship controversy" that Shelden relates back, psychologically, to Twain himself. Still, an excellent introduction to the subject.
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These 14 half-hour talks are presented in quiet way that lets the words and ideas speak for themselves.
Highly recommended to those who want to know more about this important American author.
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