The skill and precision of Elijah's delivery meant his narration never got in the way of the story. It was all about Huck Finn, never about Elijah's virtuosity. The characters were real, not actors in a play.
I was transported to different world where the simple things are important.
Reading in silence would never have brought the different characters to life. It was fascinating to hear the different accents from that time and place.
The simplicity of life in those times really brings out the difference between practical and stupid.
Now I understand why this is a classic. It's timeless adventure story.
Huck was my favorite character. I loved the way he reasoned problems out.
Yes, I found the debate between Huck and Jim about King Solomon very entertaining.
Mark Twain is one of my favorite writers. I've wanted to read this book for a long time. Listening to it in my car was fantastic.
Elijah Wood brings this story to life. His voice is exactly what one imagines while reading the book. It is spot-on. Makes this classic truly enjoyable and fun. Wish I'd had this option back in High School. I am truly impressed at Elijah's range and ability to "perform" this book.
The book has been reviewed a million times, so I have nothing new to add there. This review obviously focuses instead on Elijah Wood's performance. Sometimes I would get lost in just listening to Elijah's voice and performance that I would not be paying attention to the story. (I recommend Bronson Pinchot's reading of Twain's Chapters from my Autobiography. Similarly compelling!)
I highly recommend the audio. The audio by the man was great. The woman is okay but I just like the man's voice better. I am still listening but half way through the book.
The audio makes the story come alive.
Have not finished the book.
Strong performance, timeless story, unbeatable prose
Been a long time since I last read Huck Finn. It is certainly a scathing look at racism; but it is also a study in hopelessness. Published twenty five or so years after the end of slavery, Mark Twain paints a portrait of world that is unlikely to change. Hemingway once criticized the introduction of Tom Sawyer in this novel -- but without Tom Sawyer's character, the lesson in his absurd treatment of a freed slave -- would be lost. The book is packed with irony and humor and suspense but it is devastatingly sad.
I had never read this book before listening to the audio book (which is something I rarely do - I usually read the print version first just so that I don't miss anything), but this is such an incredible performance and such a wonderful book that I found myself paying closer attention and backing it up when I missed something.
Elijah Wood's performance is perfect - I can't imagine that there is anyone who could have done this better.
All around - this is a fantastic audiobook - a great story and a great narrator.
Elijah Wood did a great job as Huck Finn. Really brought the character to life.
I loved the way that each character had his/her own distinct voice. He really did a great job of speaking for the characters
Ghost writer of over 100 unpublished works...;).
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a picaresque work of American realism that gives us a glimpse of the antebellum south through the eyes of a brilliant satirist. Twain's characters, blissfully ignorant of their fallibility, are at once funny, frustrating, and sad.
Meandering down the Mississippi River, it may be easy to forget Twain’s warning at the beginning of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn:
"Persons attempting to find a motive in this narrative will be prosecuted; persons attempting to find a moral in it will be banished; persons attempting to find a plot in it will be shot."
Without taking it too seriously, it’s important to keep this in mind. By focusing too much on a motive or moral, one risks over-simplifying the work into a piece of propaganda. There’s a lot more going on here, and a patient understanding of human weakness is a subtle undertone too important to the work to be lost in a fury of moral indignation.
It is slightly more difficult to ignore the plot. Warning or no, it's hard to overlook the glaring inconsistency of the ending with the rest of the book. Twain goes so far as to conjure Dumas in his Count of Monte Cristo style escape sequence. Unlikely, contrived, and episodic as it may have been, the French masterpiece still stuck together better than the American.
But if we heed his warning, we can focus instead on scathing satire that sheds light on absurd logic and a value system almost too incredible to believe. Elijah’s narration is a superb transparent window through which Twain’s gilt-edged wit shines brilliantly. It was here that I found the most enjoyment, not in the "adventures" themselves.
Twain also kindly lets us know that there are a few different dialects used this book. This being the case, it must be very difficult to do a true narration. Now, I'm no expert on “Missouri negro” or “Pike County” dialects of the mid 1800s, so I can't comment on Elijah’s authenticity. However, I can say that they were entertaining and largely consistent throughout the work. Be warned, however, that there is a studied exactness in his cadence that tends to drag behind the narrative.
If you're a fan of the book, and are on the fence, I can tell you to buy with confidence. You'll love the audiobook! If you've never read it, it's still worth the credit to experience Twain through the voice of such a faithful interpreter.