This paperback release of the restored edition of Finn includes four previously unknown episodes discovered in 1990 when the first half of the original handwritten manuscript was unearthed (Classic Returns, LJ 4/15/96). It also includes the original illustrations and reproductions of 29 original pages. Considering the book's importance to American letters, this complete edition is essential for all libraries.
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