Read Mississippi Writings by Mark Twain Guy Cardwell Online

mississippi-writings

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Title : Mississippi Writings
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780940450073
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 1126 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Mississippi Writings Reviews

  • William1
    2019-03-17 17:53

    I've read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. I want to get to some of the stories here. A beautifully made book. Acid-free paper, sewn signatures. Lovely.

  • Martin
    2019-02-28 16:54

    Here are my ratings for the individual books included in this collection:- Life On The Mississippi: 4 stars. The best part of this collection. Entertaining, informative, and funny, too! Your best reason for picking up this book.- The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer: 3 stars. It has its moments. Those meddling kids...- The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn: 2 stars. This one was a chore to read. Massa please, no mo'!- Pudd'nhead Wilson: 3 stars. Funny, insightful, and makes you think. Your second best reason for picking up this book.So, in spite of Huck Finn and its 2 stars, this book ends up with a rating of 4 stars, on the strength of Life On The Mississippi. Happy reading!

  • Nick
    2019-03-07 15:53

    This review only covers the "Life on the Mississipi" portion of this edition.A great book of memoirs of Twain's years as a steamboat pilot on the Mississippi, before levees and dredging and electric lights to guide boat pilots on their frequent voyages up and down the river. After becoming a famous author, Twain returned to the Mississippi (incognito at first) to learn how much things had changed in the 20-odd years he'd spent since his tour of duty on the river. The pilots of his day had to memorize 1,200 miles of twisting, turning, ever-changing river so as never to put their vessel in danger of sinking or running aground, and they had to be able to do so in all weather, at all flood levels, and all times of day or night. Such expertise perished with the proliferation of railroads, having been rendered unnecessary, and so Twain's remembrances are bittersweet as he recounts the most memorable of the many thousands of hours spent behind the ship's wheel mastering the art of piloting. Along with his many stories of life on the river and the outrageous personalities encountered along the way, he recounts his memories of the many river towns and how changes in commerce and even in the riverbed itself influences the communities that were nourished by the steamboat. An excellent bedtime read that managed to hold my interest throughout--even the appendix of a few Native American myths that he'd overheard among his fellow passengers. If you enjoyed Two Years Before the Mast: A Sailor's Life at Sea, this one's less polished, but of the same genre and style.

  • April
    2019-03-11 13:12

    Extraordinary story-telling and writing. Like any good writer, Mark Twain brings you into the story and environment of his characters. This book was interestingly bound and printed on paper like that of a Bible--the pages were extremely thin and therefore the publishers could fit over 1,100 pages into a relatively slim volume. Out of the four writings in the book, I'd only read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn before in middle school and maybe only just a few chapters into it. Of course, it was hard to read the "N" word so much but I understand that those were the times and it was commonplace and definitely created the placement of the story in time. And he gave more hopeful stories about slaves because he wrote quite a bit about slaves being freed from their masters.In The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, it's fantastic story-telling and gets us right into the adventure with Tom, although we can see how mischievous and extravagant or excessive he is in his fantastical actions, which are influenced by his being a little "emo." I remember feeling the same way that Tom did, though, with the wish to run away in order to avenge your good name after being reprimanded for something unfairly. The hope was to have people miss you so much that they'd feel guilty about reprimanding you and then would see you as a blessing instead of a curse. I did love Tom's spin on the fence whitewashing! Twain depicted the actions and thoughts of young people so accurately--their absorption in a novelty and turning anything into a game, their resourcefulness, their attachment to superstitions from stories told by adults or overheard from adults, their childish romances and ideas of romance. I thought Pudd'nhead Wilson was a bit choppy and disjointed at points, but I read in the "Note on the Texts" that revising this almost killed him. It introduced so many moral conflicts, though--almost too many for one story. Some of the chapters from Life on the Mississippi were a little tedious, but some of the stories were fantastic. I enjoyed the insight into steamboat piloting and the type of life that could be experienced on the river. His telling about feuds (like the one between the Darnells and Watsons) reminded me of modern day gang warfare, being just as violent and gratuitous. It was also a surprise to learn that "Mark Twain" is a steamboating term and that's where Samuel Langhorne Clemens decided to pull his pen name from.I enjoyed reading the Chronology about Mark Twain's life and was surprised to find out that he traveled the world quite a bit with his family, even though many of them were in poor health at times, yet they endured weeks-long boat trips and railway trips, domestically and internationally. It seemed that they went to every continent except Antarctica, which is quite an impressive amount of travel without airplanes. Also, the amounts of money mentioned for those times are still large sums in our time--he spent $3,000/month on funding the Paige machine along with whatever other expenses he and his family had, people were writing $200,000 checks for book writing, etc. I also liked reading about his residences in San Francisco and New York City because I've lived in bot those places and am familiar with the locations mentioned.From The Adventures of Tom Sawyer"The children fastened their eyes upon the bit of candle and watched it melt slowly and pitilessly away; saw the half inch of wick stand alone at last; saw the feeble flame rise and fall, rise and fall, climb the thin column of smoke, linger at its top a moment, and then--the horror of utter darkness reigned!" pg. 192 (I love this description of the candle burning out and the children's accompanying emotions--great illustrative writing)"Huck Finn's wealth and the fact that he was now under the widow Douglas's protection, introduced him into society--no, dragged him into it, hurled him into it--and his sufferings were almost more than he could bear. The widow's servants kept him clean and neat, combed and brushed, and they bedded him nightly in unsympathetic sheets that had not one little spot or stain which he could press to his heart and know for a friend." pg. 211 (I love how close we get to Huck Finn here)From Life on the Mississippi"Months afterward the hope within me struggled to a reluctant death, and I found myself without an ambition. But I was ashamed to go home." pg. 257"Such a memory as that is a great misfortune. To it, all occurrences are of the same size. Its possessor cannot distinguish an interesting circumstance from an uninteresting one. As a talker, he is bound to clog his narrative with tiresome details and make himself an insufferable bore. Moreover, he cannot stick to his subject. He picks up every little grain of memory he discerns in his way, and so is led aside." pg. 308"It may be that carriage is at the bottom of this thing; and I think it is; for there are plenty of ladies and gentlemen in the provincial cities whose garments are all made by the best tailors and dressmakers of New York; yet this has no perceptible effect upon the grand fact: the educated eye never mistakes those people for New-Yorkers. No, there is a godless grace, and snap, and style about a born and bred New-Yorker which mere clothing cannot effect." pg. 362"They must have their dogs; can't go without their dogs. Yet the dogs are never willing; they always object; so, one after another in ridiculous procession, they are dragged aboard; all four feet braced and sliding along the stage, head likely to be pulled off, but the tugger marching determinedly forward, bending to his work, with the rope over his shoulder for better purchase. Sometimes a child is forgotten and left on the bank; but never a dog." pg. 414"I had myself called with the four o'clock watch, mornings, for one cannot see too many summer sunrises on the Mississippi. They are enchanting. First, there is the eloquence of silence; for a deep hush broods everywhere. Next, there is the haunting sense of loneliness, isolation, remoteness from the worry and bustle of the world. The dawn creeps in stealthily; the solid walls of black forest soften to gray, and vast stretches of the river open up and reveal themselves; the water is glass-smooth, gives off spectral little wreaths of white mist, there is not the faintest breath of wind, nor stir of leaf; the tranquility is profound and infinitely satisfying. Then a bird pipes up, another follows, and soon the pipings develop into a jubilant riot of music. You see none of the birds; you simply move through an atmosphere of song which seems to sing itself. When the light has become a little stronger, you have one of the fairest and softest pictures imaginable. You have the intense green of the massed and crowded foliage near by; you see it paling shade by shade in front of you; upon the next projecting cape, a mile off or more, the tint has lightened to the tender young green of spring; the cape beyond that one has almost lost color, and the furthest one, miles away under the horizon, sleeps upon the water a mere dim vapor, and hardly separable from the sky above it and about it. And all this stretch of river is a mirror, and you have the shadowy reflections of the leafage and the curving shores and the receding capes pictured in it. Well, that is all beautiful; soft and rich and beautiful; and when then sun gets well up, and distributes a pink flush here and a powder of gold yonder and a purple haze where it will yield the best effect, you grant that you have seen something that is worth remembering." pg. 417"He was a living man, but he did not look it. He was abed, and had his head propped high on pillows; his face was wasted and colorless, his deep-sunken eyes were shut; his hand, lying on his breast, was talon-like, it was so bony and long-fingered. . .The man's eyes opened slowly, and glittered wickedly out from the twilight of their caverns; he frowned a black frown; he lifted his lean hand and waved us peremptorily away. " pg. 421 (I enjoyed the dark story of revenge that unfolds after this)"The magnolia-trees in the Capitol grounds were lovely and fragrant, with their dense rich foliage and huge snow-ball blossoms. The scent of the flower is very sweet, but you want distance on it, because it is so powerful. They are not good bedroom blossoms--they might suffocate one in his sleep." pg. 468From The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn"I did wish Tom Sawyer was there. I knowed he would take an interest in this kind of business, and throw in the fancy touches. Nobody could spread himself like Tom Sawyer in such a thing as that." pg. 657"Mary Jane she set at the head of the table, with Susan along side of her, and said how bad the biscuits was, and how mean the preserves was, and how ornery and tough the fried chickens was--and all that kind of rot, the way women always do for to force out compliments; and the people all knowed everything was tip-top, and said so--said 'How do you get biscuits to brown so nice?' and 'Where, for the land's sake did you get these amaz'n pickles?' and all that kind of humbug talky-talk, just the way people always does at a supper, you know." pg. 792From Pudd'nhead WilsonAll of his "calendar" sayings were so witty, ironic, and hilarious, and this one caught me off guard the most and I did like it:"Adam was but human--this explains it all. He did not want the apple for the apple's sake, he wanted it only because it was forbidden. The mistake was in not forbidding the serpent; then he would have eaten the serpent." pg. 922Book: borrowed from Skyline College library.

  • Dee ReneeChesnut
    2019-03-11 19:46

    I had myself called with the four o'clock watch, mornings, for one cannot see too many summer sunrises on the Mississippi. They are enchanting. First, there is the eloquence of silence; for a deep hush broods everywhere. Next, there is the haunting sense of loneliness, isolation, remoteness from the worry and bustle of the world. The dawn creeps in stealthily; the solid walls of black forest to gray, and vast stretches of the river open up and reveal themselves; the water is glass smooth, gives off spectral little wreaths of white mist, there is not the faintest breath of wind, nor stir of leaf; the tranquility is profound and infinitely satisfying. Then a bird pipes up, another follows, and soon the pipings develop into a jubilant riot of music. You see none of the birds; you simply move through an atmosphere of song which seems to sing itself. When the light becomes a little stronger, you have one of the fairest and softest pictures imaginable. You have the intense green of the massed and crowded foliage near by; you see it paling shade by shade in front of you; upon the next projecting cape, a mile off or more, the tint has lightened to the tender young green of spring; the cape beyond that has almost lost color, and the further one, miles away under the horizon, sleeps upon the water a mere dim vapor, and hardly separable from the sky above it and about it. And all this stretch of river is a mirror, and you have the shadowy reflections of the leafage and the curving shores and the receding capes pictured in it. Well, that is all beautiful; soft and rich and beautiful; and when the sun gets well up, and distributes a pink flush here and a powder of gold yonder and purple haze where it will yield the best effect, you grant that you have seen something worth remembering. from Life on the Missippi p. 417

  • Keith
    2019-03-13 17:08

    This volume, clearly, deserves at least four stars for the presence of Huckleberry Finn. So far, though, I've only (re)read Life on the Mississippi. Life on the Mississippi (08/13)** This book is legion. There are so many vignettes and tales and stories, it’s hard to make anything of it. It occurred to me that I have never read a travelogue, so maybe this is normal. I found it tiring.The first part of the book is the best – Twain’s recollections of being a cub pilot and his experiences on the river. I laughed out loud at parts of this (much to the bemusement of my fellow train passengers).But that is a small part of the book. The rest is about Twain’s return to the river 20 years later. Here, the book becomes a collection of stories ranging from one paragraph to one chapter. Nothing is too odd, too melodramatic or too unrelated to be included. As long as it happened on, about, or near the river, Twain includes it. Some are interesting, others not. This is supposed to be a whimsical look at life on the river, but racism and anti-Semitism so suffuse the stories (particularly in the middle of the book) that it was hard to find much whimsical or amusing. Not that I think Twain was a racist or anti-Semitic (though the latter is debatable), but in accurately portraying that time and place, he accurately captures a world brimming with hatred, stupidity and closed-mindedness. Life on the Mississippi in the mid-1800s was disturbing. Overall, it’s not a book I would recommend unless you are a hardcore Twain reader.

  • Maria
    2019-03-15 12:55

    Actually I got all four of these books from Librivox.com as audiobooks. It was the first time I had read Life on the Mississippi and The Tragedy of Pudd'nhead Wilson, the second time I had read Tom Sawyer, and the third time I had read Huckleberry Finn. Now that I have lived on the Mississippi river for 35 years, they all had more meaning. My favorite was Life on the Mississippi. The other three were uncomfortable books written about slave days in Missouri by someone who had witnessed them firsthand. At first I tried to determine how Mark Twain felt about slavery as I read these three books and finally gave up and tried to see the writing as a portrayal of the times. That did not lessen my discomfort, but at least I stopped jerking everytime I heard the word "nigger". All of the books forced me to realize that slavery was not only bad, but it gave an entire race of deserving people a bad "rap". In that respect they were horrifying. On the other hand, they do make you realize how awful those times were for blacks, something us whites frequently fail to realize. It also makes one question just what has changed, if anything. I can only hope that it has for most blacks. Future years under Obama's leadership will hopefully show that this is so.

  • Chuck
    2019-03-12 19:50

    It would be absurd to "review" these classics. I suppose that I read at least some of them in childhood, but if so they have dimmed to oblivion through the years; consequently they are well worth a revisit many decades later. Sure the racism of Twain's era is contained therein, but if you can get past the "N-word", there are actually many moments of social enlightenment to be found in these texts. Social commentary aside, Twain's story-telling powers are unrivaled, and the sense of adventure retains its force even in the Internet era (if Tom and Huck were on Facebook, you can be sure that some major Cyberpranks would be in the offing). And if Eliot Spitzer hadn't self-destructed, he might have turned out to be a contemporary Pudd'nhead Wilson (well, perhaps the "Pudd'nhead" appellation is still appropriate for Mr. Spitzer).

  • Paul Jellinek
    2019-03-04 14:14

    Hadn't read this one (Tom Sawyer) since childhood, and it is a whole different experience reading it as an adult. The plot is a little clumsy at times, but the writing is a hoot from start to finish. I look forward to re-reading the other books in this volume.

  • Atina
    2019-03-20 13:08

    Great Classic of literature. Very charming book with social conflicts and great characters.

  • Shannon Magers
    2019-03-12 15:56

    The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (2007)

  • William
    2019-03-16 15:57

    I'd read it when I was young. I didn't get it back then. I really don't like the ending, unsatisfactory.

  • Yvonne Crawford
    2019-02-20 19:00

    love Mark Twain

  • Mack
    2019-03-06 20:09

    To try new things and enjoy life.

  • Nicholas Whyte
    2019-02-23 18:06

    Great boys' story, much better than Tom Sawyer.

  • Nate
    2019-03-05 18:01

    Life on the Mississippi isn't really my cup of tea, but Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn are excellent. I didn't read Pudd'nhead Wilson.

  • Karen
    2019-03-20 12:00

    So far I have finished The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. It was neat to read this after about 30+ years.

  • Thomas
    2019-03-08 18:12

    Huck Finn & Tom Sawyer 4*Life on the Mississippi 3*

  • Jonathan
    2019-03-14 11:48

    None

  • Martin Bihl
    2019-03-11 13:03

    Pudd'nhead Wilson - Finished - 12/27/11Life on the Mississippi - Finished - 05/24/17(Tom Sawyer & Huck Finn read previously in other volumes)

  • Jeff
    2019-02-18 16:57

    Rev hhh

  • Kurt Zisa
    2019-02-21 14:48

    Great collection of Twains most famous works - all centered around the ever powerful Mississippi river.

  • Michael
    2019-03-15 13:11

    I read this aloud to my son. The whole thing. But I always skipped the "n" word.

  • Martin
    2019-02-23 14:51

    Finished Tom Sawyer folks. Delightful little yarn. I'll tackle Huckleberry after the spooky reading season.

  • KarnagesMistress
    2019-03-11 14:09

    Adventures of Huckleberry Finn only