Thursday, March 5, 2015

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

Unabridged Audio Version on Audible

This year, I was bound and determined to read the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain from start to finish for four main reasons. 

My first reason for reading the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is that when I was in junior high school, our class began reading this novel, but we never finished reading it for reasons I'm not sure. 

Then a few years ago, a reading group I'd joined had selected this classic novel to read for their next meet-up... And although, I'd started reading the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn for our book group meet-up, I never finished reading it due to unexpected life events that came up... Life happens, right?

So, wanting to read this novel to the end has been my agenda ever since then.

My second reason for wanting to read the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn from start to finish, is that it has been banned/challenged book in the past and I want to read what all the fuss is about as to why it was banned/challenged in the first place.

My third reason for reading the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, is that I can't believe I haven't read this classic novel yet!

My fourth and final reason for reading this novel is that I am participating in a Banned Books Reading Challenge this year and this is one of the books I've chosen to read for it.

Instead of reading this novel, I decided to listen to the unabridged audio version of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain and read by B. J. Harrison from Audible. Listening time is approximately 10 hours. I figured that since I love listening to audiobooks, I may have a better chance of actually finishing this novel than if I'd read it instead. And I listened to it in about 4 days last month and am finally writing my review of the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn now.

Let's just say that I'm glad I chose to listen to the unabridged audio version of this classic novel as it made for a better, more enjoyable overall experience for me personally. 

I very much enjoyed B. J. Harrison's narration of the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Dramatic readers can make or break a listening experience. 

The plot summary for the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain is as follows from Audible:
Huckleberry Finn is the original American maverick. He chooses the things that feel the most comfortable for him, regardless of what others may say. But when he is forced to flee his home, and comes into company with Jim, a runaway slave, his sound heart collides with his ill-trained conscience. Together, Huck and Jim journey down the Mississippi River, on an odyssey that has become one of the finest American Classics in the world of literature. This timeless novel is performed by award-winning Classic Tales narrator B.J. Harrison. It is an event you won't want to miss.
As far as the story/plot goes for the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, I must say that Huckleberry Finn does have some rather interesting and entertaining adventures while traveling on the Mississippi River. The people he meets and the experiences he has were something else.

I enjoyed the first one-third and the last one-third of the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn more than I did the middle section of this novel... The last one-third of the novel, when Huckleberry Finn meets up with Tom Sawyer again, had me howling with laughter in certain scenes at their crazy antics in trying to save/free Jim. 

Tom Sawyer had all these crazy ideas and so called "rules" that they had to be followed in order to set Jim free from his captors. And for whatever reason Huckleberry Finn went along with the these "rules" despite that his ideas seemed more reasonable in setting Jim free than did Tom Sawyer's ideas. Nonetheless, the two teenage boys caused more trouble, angst and mayhem than was even necessary. I also felt that Huckleberry Finn seemed smarter and more mature for his age. Whereas, by contrast, Tom Sawyer seems more creative and imaginative for his age. 

The topic of slavery does come up in the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn as Huckleberry struggles with whether to turn Jim over to the authorities as Jim is a runaway slave... Or if he should let Jim remain free. Huckleberry was conflicted several times over the course of the novel as to whether he should conform to social norms regarding slavery and whether to turn Jim over to the proper authorities... Or follow is conscious and let Jim remain a free man. In the end, after much soul searching, Huckleberry Finn decides that Jim should remain a free man.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain has been a banned/challenged book since shortly after its publication in 1884. According to the Banned Books Week website, the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain was banned/challenged for the following reasons:
The first ban of Mark Twain’s American classic in Concord, MA in 1885 called it “trash and suitable only for the slums.” Objections to the book have evolved, but only marginally. Twain’s book is one of the most-challenged of all time and is frequently challenged even today because of its frequent use of the word “nigger.” Otherwise it is alleged the book is “racially insensitive,” “oppressive,” and “perpetuates racism.”
I'm glad I finally read... Or rather listened to the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain at last. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn hasn't become a favorite novel or anything like that for me. I respect it for the American classic novel it is, but that is it. I'm giving the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn a rating of 6 stars out of 10 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

No comments:

Post a Comment