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Pudd'nhead Wilson and Other Tales (World's Classics)

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  164 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Pudd'nhead Wilson (1894), written in a more sombre vein than his other Mississippi writings, was Mark Twain's last serious work of fiction. It reveals the sinister forces that, towards the end of his life, Twain thought to be threatening the American dream. The central plot revolves around the tragedy of "Roxy," a mulatto slave whose attempt to save her son from his fate s ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published July 22nd 1999 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published 1992)
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Nov 05, 2010 Keri rated it really liked it
I'm a big Mark Twain fan and I enjoyed this book no less and probably more than some of his others! I love Twain's humor and sarcasm and how it frames racial and moral disputes of his time. This particular work is about a slave woman who is mostly white, but the fraction of Negro blood in her keeps her enslaved. She is a mother to a baby who is even less "colored" and cares for the Master's baby who is about the same age. She decides to give her own son a chance for a better life, and swaps the ...more
Jul 29, 2014 Stephen rated it liked it
Classic work complicating questions of slavery and racial identity.
The language is a bit hard to get into at fast, but then becomes easier once you get into the grove of reading it.

It contains tons of thought-provoking themes on society, especially nature vs. nurture.

For me, "Those Extraordinary Twins" is probably the most hilarious part of the Pudd'nhead Wilson' storyline. That farce is worth a read because it seems quite outrageous and unbelievable. Still, it's stories like those that make me fall in love with Twain's writing.
I don't know why I was surprised at how clever, radical and funny this book was-that is what Mark Twain is famous for! I loved Puddin'head Wilson! What a story.
Jenn Davis
Mar 20, 2007 Jenn Davis rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics
It's too bad this isn't wider read as an example of Mark Twain, as it's probably one of his more interesting novels. Risky business for Twain to be writing about a little white boy who's mistaken for black and a little black boy who gets treated like a white kid, but that's part of what makes it so intriguing.
Heather P
May 08, 2008 Heather P rated it liked it
I really enjoyed this book. Its a good fast read. I think its an interesting book about the views of slavery from slaves, but also for the whole argument of nature verses nurture. I love Mark Twain's southern satire.
May 30, 2011 Raffi rated it it was amazing
Puddnhead is, hands down, my favorite Twain tale. It's his funniest, most convoluted story, dealing with an impossibly fascinating topic.
Feb 21, 2008 Megan rated it really liked it
Shelves: college
Fingerprinting Merit Badge ruined the end of this book for me.

But it's a good book. Twain's irony and sarcasm at it's best.
Todd Kruse
Nov 02, 2013 Todd Kruse rated it it was amazing
19th century humor that is still very entertaining in 2013! This is a keeper to have our kids read one day.
May 15, 2012 Alice rated it really liked it
I really didn't think I would enjoy this book....why did I ever think that?! AMAZING!!!! loved it.
Apr 26, 2010 SKN83 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was bored with the book and its author, in his defece he had some good prose.
Simon Rogers
great little read
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Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He is noted for his novels Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), called "the Great American Novel", and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876).

Twain grew up in Hannibal, Missouri, which would later provide the setting for Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer. He apprenticed with a printer. He also work
More about Mark Twain...

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“April 1. This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three hundred and sixty-four.” 1378 likes
“A man who is not born with the novel-writing gift has a troublesome time of it when he tries to build a novel. I know this from experience. He has no clear idea of his story; in fact he has no story. He merely has some people in his mind, and an incident or two, also a locality, and he trusts he can plunge those people into those incidents with interesting results. So he goes to work. To write a novel? No--that is a thought which comes later; in the beginning he is only proposing to tell a little tale, a very little tale, a six-page tale. But as it is a tale which he is not acquainted with, and can only find out what it is by listening as it goes along telling itself, it is more than apt to go on and on and on till it spreads itself into a book. I know about this, because it has happened to me so many times.” 129 likes
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