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244 pages, Paperback
First published June 1, 1876
¹Me (age 5) and Mom. The diligent seriousness is *all over* this picture.
After that foreword, slogging through any classic was a comparative breeze. Yes, I'm looking at you, War and Peace! You know what you did, you endless tome.Also, as it turns out, when you include two characters named Joe in one book (Injun Joe and Tom's classmate Joe Harper) that can cause a certain amount of confusion to a five-year-old who assumes they have to be the same person and struggles really hard to reconcile their seemingly conflicting characters. And, as a side note, I have always been disappointed at Tom Sawyer tricking his friends to do the infamous fence whitewashing. A *real* kid knows after all that painting stuff is fun. Five-year-old me was a bit disapproving of the silliness.
Although my book is intended mainly for the entertainment of boys and girls, I hope it will not be shunned by men and women on that account, for part of my plan has been to try to pleasantly remind adults of what they once were themselves, and of how they felt and thought and talked, and what queer enterprises they sometimes engaged in.
Huckleberry came and went, at his own free will. He slept on doorsteps in fine weather and in empty hogsheads in wet; he did not have to go to school or to church, or call any being master or obey anybody; he could go fishing or swimming when and where he chose, and stay as long as it suited him; nobody forbade him to fight; he could sit up as late as he pleased; he was always the first boy that went barefoot in the spring and the last to resume leather in the fall; he never had to wash, nor put on clean clothes; he could swear wonderfully. In a word, everything that goes to make life precious that boy had. So thought every harassed, hampered, respectable boy in St. Petersburg.