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Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
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The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foundation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hardbound editions of important works of literature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torch-bearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inaugurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.

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In 1990, a small miracle happened. While searching through her grandfather's belongings, a woman librarian found among his possessions the first 665 handwritten pages of Twain's manuscript for Huck Finn, which for generations had been missing and presumed permanently lost. The emergence of the missing pages allowed scholars to assess the numerous changes made by both Twain and subsequent editors and publishers. This remarkable edition assembled by experts at the Mark Twain Project of the Bancroft Library at the University of California reedits the text according to Twain's handwritten notes on both parts of the manuscript. In addition to the restored text, this edition includes almost 800 pages of scholarly extras, including line-by-line notes on the alternations and revisions, expanded maps, explanatory notes, illustrations, and much more. Absolutely essential for academic libraries; public libraries also may want to consider. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Gr 9 Up-All the highwater tales of Huck's journey are in this abridged versionÄhis faked death, the Jackson Island sojourn, the Grangerford-Shepherdson feud, the Duke and the King, and his reunion with Tom Sawyer. Along the way, we are treated to a sensual feast of the sights, smells, and rhythms of the Mississippi River and the humanistic education of Huck that culminates in his assisting in Jim's escape. The familiar adventures of Huck and runaway slave Jim's odyssey on a raft floating down the Mississippi have been well documented previously in audio format with noted versions read by Ed Begley, Will Wheaton (both from Dove), and the 1985 Grammy nominated Durkin Hayes production read by Dick Cavett. This version, beautifully read by actor Mike McShane, is a wonderful contribution to the recorded Twain canon. McShane handles multiple characterizations well, but excels in Huck's folksy narrative voice and Jim's understated power and dignity. School and public libraries should not miss this excellent rendition.-Barry X. Miller, Austin Public Library, TX Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

In this centenary year of the first American edition of Huckleberry Finn, Neider, who has worked long and well in the thickets of Twain scholarship (this is the ninth Twain volume he has edited), offers a most fitting tribute, for which he will be thanked in some quarters, damned in others. Neider's contribution is twofold: he has restored to its rightful place the great rafting chapter, which the author had lifted from the manuscript-in-progress and dropped into Life on the Mississippi, and he has abridged some of the childish larkiness in the portions in which Huck's friend Tom Sawyer intrudes into this novel. For decades, critics have lamented the absence of the ``missing'' chapter and deplored the jarring presence of Tom in episodes that slow the narrative, but not until now has anyone had the temerity to set matters right. In paring back the ``Tom'' chapters (which he fully documents in his lengthy, spirited introduction, with literal line counts of the excised material), Neider has achieved a brisker read. Though there may be some brickbats thrown at him for this ``sacrilege,'' few should object to the belated appearance of the transplanted rafting chapter in the novel in which it clearly belongs. October 25

"All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn. It's the best book we've had." --Ernest Hemingway

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