The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Review

Huckleberry Finn is Mark Twain’s sequel to The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and was published in 1884.

I found the writing of the book to be very difficult to get used to and this made it a time-consuming effort. The author notes at the beginning that several dialects from Southern America are used by different characters. The speech, which there is much of, is not spelt in a formal English way which made it difficult to read. I didn’t really enjoy the book that much as I found it difficult to read and didn’t like ending after Tom Sawyer was re-introduced towards the end.

The storyline does include many little adventures for Huckleberry, while he and Jim run away and are travelling on a raft down the Mississippi river. There are lots of characters introduced and Huckleberry travels around with the raft so that he can escape when necessary. I also feel like there was unnecessary stereotyping of Jim as being ignorant and not intelligent.

It is argued that the book was against slavery in the south of America at the time and the main character Huckleberry Finn appears to be conflicted on whether helping a slave to escape is the right thing to do. The novel is controversial for it’s repeated use of the n-word, a pejorative slur. In context at the time of its publication the word was not seen as unacceptable within the society. Moreover, there have been discussions of censorship of the book, to edit out these words, which has been heavily criticised.

Links:

Sparknotes Context to Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/huckfinn/context.html

Video Sparknotes: Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Summary

‘To kill a Mockingbird and Huckleberry Finn banned from schools in Virginia for racism’ article by The Telegraph

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/12/05/kill-mockingbird-huckleberry-finn-banned-schools-virginia-racism/

Classic Book Reviews

This is a compilation of all of the Classic Books I will be reading this Summer/Autumn. I have already written a review of Frankenstein so that is not pictured above.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (1884)

This is one of the great American novels and has themes of race and identity. The author Mark Twain seemed critical of the racism that existed at the time of the books publishing. It is written from the perspective of a boy named Huckleberry Finn as he goes on lots of adventures in his youth.

Hard Times by Charles Dickens (1854)

This is the 10th novel of Charles Dickens. I am looking forward to reading Hard Times because Charles Dickens books sometimes had critical views of the social and economic conditions in 19th century England.

Dracula by Bram Stoker (1897)

A gothic horror by the Irish author Bram Stoker. He created ‘Count Dracula’ in a story of vampirism and horror fiction. Many books on vampires have been successful since, for example, Twilight based on the vampire myth. This was a landmark vampire novel and I am excited to read it.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (1813)

This  is a romance novel and is a popular novel in English literature. I do not read many romance novels but I find Pride and Prejudice to be appealing.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë (1847)

Emily Brontë was part of the Brontë family and Wuthering Heights was her only novel. This book is a classic in English literature and is part of the period of Romanticism in Europe.

Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (1856)

This was the debut novel of French author Gustave Flaubert and he began the artistic movement of literary realism in France. It depicts ordinary circumstances as they are.

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne (1850)

This is another American classic that is set in the puritan era in 17th century Massachusetts. This is also considered a romance novel and revolves around legalism and sin.

Gullivers’ Travels by Jonathan Swift (1726)

This is the oldest of the novels I have compiled so far and it is a satire on human nature. This one is also by an Irish author.

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Marquez (1967)

This is a modern classic by a Colombian author and is a multi-generational story with a magic realist style. I hope to read more literature from other ethnic authors as part of the next collection of classic books I review.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley Review

I enjoyed reading Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley, as I found it thought provoking. This is one of the first classic books I’ve written about and I’m glad I started with Frankenstein.

It is a common misunderstanding that the ‘creature’ created in the story is named Frankenstein, however the scientist who created him is actually named Frankenstein. A large part of the book is his flashback. His creation is never given an actual name.

The characters were developed well and they were gradually phased out from the story, so towards the end most of the focus is on the monster and his experience of life and feeling rejected by humans.

“How much happier that man is who believes his native town to be the world, than he who aspires to be greater than nature will allow” – Frankenstein

Personally, I feel that the reader is dissuaded from feeling any sympathy for Frankenstein or the monster, but is encouraged to see God’s creation of humans as superior to humans creations.