Twain called this story a "hymn to boyhood". Loved by all ages in countless renditions in all media. A classic piece of American literature.
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- The Nealy Family
Recommended but not a must
THE ADVENTURES OF TOM SAWYER, by Mark Twain
Unlike Adventures of Alice in Wonderland, I don’t consider Tom Sawyer essential adult reading particularly if you have not read your own fundamentals (in my case, the Classics, Vargas Vila, Thomas Hardy, Hugo, Wilde, Dickens, Stendhal, Flaubert, and others). The narrator, Curtis Sisco, was fantastic in keeping pace and recreating the regional accents thereby making the experience more enjoyable. The book is entertaining, funny, and it is not entirely devoid of social message. Recommended (3 stars) but not Highly Recommended or a Must Read (4 stars), let alone a Masterpiece (5 stars).
The following is a book summary: don’t read unless you are not reading the book.
Tom Sawyer is a clever orphan boy who lives in St. Petersburg, a poor village by the Mississippi around 1840 with his Aunt Polly and his half-brother Sid. He is mischievous, smart, unafraid, and willing to do anything for a thrill. We first meet him in the pantry eating jam and hiding from his aunt Polly. The book narrates a series of adventures that famously include not only conniving his fellow friends to white wash (i.e. paint) a fence, a chore he must do as a punishment for a bad deed, but even more ignominiously, making his friends pay for it. He then uses the collection of assets gathered from the deal to exchange for tickets at church in order to get a bible. Obviously, he is not interested in bible study; he wants to use it to impress a girl named Becky Thatcher whom he eventually kisses and falls for him.
We soon meet Huckleberry Finn, a badass outcast boy whose latest acquisition is a dead cat which he plans to use “to cure warts”. Thing is though that It will only work if they witness The Devil take the soul of a wicked man buried at the cemetery at midnight. Sure enough, when they are there, they get to witness a bad guy, -Indian, of course- or at least “half-breed”, named Injun Joe to kill an accompanying doctor and blame his drunken partner Muff Potter. Fearing for their life Tom and Huck run away, swear and sign with blood never to tell what they just witnessed. Soon after though, knowing that an innocent man will surely be hanged, Tom gets depressed, feels remorse and escapes with his friend Joe Harper to a desolate island on the Mississippi to lead a life of pirates. Of course Huck Finn soon joins them and they hang out together for a few days. In the village meanwhile everybody mourns as they think they’ve drowned. The three boys get bored in the island and come back to town just in time to witness their own funeral. Of course they become instant heroes. Armed now with courage and plagued by remorse, Tom testifies at the trial of Muff Potter. Injun Joe is exposed, he escapes through a window and skips town.
From there on out, the adventures continue, Tom and Huck become aware of a treasure that Injun Joe is hiding. Tom and Becky get lost at a cave during a school trip. They spent three days lost in the cave. While trying to find his way out, Tom discovers Injun Joe hiding his treasure at the cave, and through a series of un-?-fortunate events, Injun Joe dies in the cave, trapped. Tom escapes, goes to town to get Huck to recover the treasure and the instantly become rich and famous.
Huck hates his new rich plush life where he must behave and follow rules and social norms. Fed up he escapes to the freedom of the wild. Tom knows where to find him. He convinces him to return to society only by promising him that they will become bank robbers.
- Antonio Rojas