Friday, 26 April 2013

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

I read this, to tell the truth, because I want to read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and, while I know the two books stand separately as well as they do together, I am a bit of a stickler from following the author's intended sequence of series, trilogies or whatever. This sometimes leads me to postpone the final ascent of the summit seen from afar, while working my way through the foothills, but I didn't feel any such deflating feelings with Tom Sawyer.

I am not sure that I have read anything by Twain before. I like to think I would have remembered, as he is a very, very lovely writer. The story of Tom Sawyer is well known, or in my case bits of it are well known, and it was a real pleasure to see the whole thing turned out for delectation and admiration.

I seem to be lapsing into a slightly Twainian style. I shall desist forthwith.

The way in which Twain makes passing sardonic commentary on the mores of society at the time of writing is  both funny and thought-provoking. Once or twice, I laughed out loud. The comical belief of the boys in the powers of incantations and words over the evidence of experience must be a dig at religion. And the story itself is sweet, well-timed and finally satisfying. A masterpiece, really. "O lordy, I'm thankful."

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