THE ADVENTURES OF MARK TWAIN BY HUCKLEBERRY FINN by Robert Burleigh

THE ADVENTURES OF MARK TWAIN BY HUCKLEBERRY FINN

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Age Range: 10 & up
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KIRKUS REVIEW

“Sam was born excited. He did stuff. He tramped and skylarked and poked his shovel into whatever tripped his fancy.” If that sounds like how the fictional character Huckleberry Finn would describe his creator, Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), then author Burleigh has at least nailed Huck-speak in this unorthodox picture-book biography for older Twainophiles. The “editors’ ” “Warning to the Reader” about the impending “ain’ts” and potentially confusing folksy expressions only calls attention to the dicey premise and begs the question, “Who is this for?” That said, Blitt’s lovely, lively pen, ink and watercolors inventively illustrate Huck’s affectionate, time-traveling, tour guide’s view of Twain’s life. A giant-headed Huck looks through a window, Ghost of Christmas Past–style, examining 11-year-old Sam, who’s gazing forlornly at a picture of his late Pap, for instance. Huck journeys from Twain’s Mississippi-loving, school-phobic boyhood years to his steamboat days to his “honest-to-goodness writer” career, to his family life, through hard times when he was “dead-for-earnest broke,” to his death. At the end is another “editor’s” note and timeline: “Since Mr. Finn’s manuscript contains no dates and leaves out some important details.” Huck says this “ain’t intendin’ to be some windy bioografy,” and it isn’t. It’s a breezy homage to Twain’s life and literary world that will please some, aggravate some and utterly baffle others. (Picture book/biography. 10 & up)

Pub Date: March 8th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-689-83041-9
Page count: 48pp
Publisher: Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 2011




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