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About the book
  • Published: 15 June 2007
  • ISBN: 9780375759376
  • Imprint: Random House USA
  • Format: Paperback
  • RRP: $22.99
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Mod Lib Life On The Mississippi


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'I am a person who would quit authorizing in a minute to go to piloting,' Mark Twain once remarked. 'I would rather sink a steamboat than eat, any time.' And in 1882, Twain did just that: he returned to the river of his youth as a mature writer determined to expand seven articles which he had serialized in The Atlantic Monthly in 1875 into the definitive travelogue on the great Mississippi. Although Life on the Mississippi was not commercially successful when first published in May 1883, it is the work that Twain later claimed was the favorite among his books. Twain's rich portrait of the Mississippi also marks a distinctive transition in the life of the nation, from the boom years preceding the Civil War to the sober times that followed. Yet it is infused with the irreverent humor that was his trademark. 'Mark Twain was the first writer who ever used the American vernacular at the level of art,' said Bernard de Voto. 'He had a greater effect than any other writer on the evolution of American prose.'

  • Pub date: 15 June 2007
  • ISBN: 9780375759376
  • Imprint: Random House USA
  • Format: Paperback
  • RRP: $22.99

About the Author

Mark Twain

Mark Twain's real name was Sam Clemens, and he was born in 1835 in a small town on the Mississippi, one of seven children. He smoked cigars at the age of eight, and aged nine he stowed away on a steamboat. He left school at 11 and worked at a grocery store, a bookstore, a blacksmith's and a newspaper, where he was allowed to write his own stories (not all of them true). He then worked on a steamboat, where he got the name 'Mark Twain' (from the call given by the boat's pilot when their boat is in safe waters). Eventually he turned to journalism again, travelled round the world, and began writing books which became very popular. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn are his most famous novels. He poured the money he earned from writing into new business ventures and crazy inventions, such as a clamp to stop babies throwing off their bed covers, a new boardgame, and a hand grenade full of extinguishing liquid to throw on a fire. With his shock of white hair and trademark white suit Mark Twain became the most famous American writer in the world. He died in 1910.

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