Elijah Wood’s performance is my nominee for the Narrators’ Hall of Fame. Wood’s unself-conscious reading doesn’t sound like a reading at all. He creates an entire world filled with people who cross class and color lines. His accents range from British to faux-British to all manner of regional affectations, twangs, and drawls. Wood’s delivery makes Mark Twain’s delicious wit and twisty language sound completely natural, especially as Huck invents plausible words to suit the moment. The journey down the Mississippi with Huck and Jim is pure pleasure, as the boy who won’t be "sivilized" and the runaway slave encounter scoundrels, slip out of scrapes, and invent outrageous tales. The listening couldn’t be better if Huck read the story himself.
Audible is pleased to announce the premiere of an exciting new series, Audible Signature Classics, featuring literature’s greatest stories, performed by accomplished stars handpicked for their ability to interpret each work in a new and refreshing way. The first book in the series is Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, performed by Elijah Wood.
Ernest Hemingway said, “All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn". One hundred years after its author’s death, this classic remains remarkably modern and poignantly relevant. In this brand new edition, Elijah Wood reads Huck in a youthful voice that may be the closest interpretation to Twain’s original intent. His performance captures the excitement and confusion of adolescence and adventure. Best of all, the immediacy of Wood’s energetic reading sweeps listeners up and makes them feel as though they’re along for the ride, as Huck and Jim push their raft toward freedom.
Stay tuned for more one-of-a-kind performances from actors Kenneth Branagh, David Hyde Pierce, Leelee Sobieski, and more, only from Audible Signature Classics.
Listen to more Audible Signature Classics.
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Audiobooks have literally changed my life. I now actually ENJOY doing mindless chores because they give me plenty of listening time!
Huck Finn, finding himself stuck between the prospect of staying locked up with his drunken, abusive father or being taken under the wing of the Widow Douglas and her sister Miss Watson who want to "sivilize" [sic] him, decides to fake his own murder so he can roam free instead. He takes off on a raft and soon runs into Jim, Miss Watson's recently escaped slave, and together they go on a long adventure down the Mississippi river. I liked the beginning of the story where Finn describes his wretched father's ill treatment of him and his subsequent clever escape, but then wasn't much taken with the rest of the first half of the book about their times on the raft. But I'm glad I didn't follow my first impulse to give up, because the action that follows picks up considerably, when the two are joined by the "Duke" and "King".
"It didn't take me long to make up my mind that these liars warn't no kings nor dukes at all, but just low-down humbugs and frauds. But I never said nothing, never let on; kept it to myself; it's the best way; then you don't have no quarrels, and don't get into no trouble. If they wanted us to call them kings and dukes, I hadn't no objections, 'long as it would keep peace in the family."
This section of the book was filled with one hilarious mad caper after another; the last section, where Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer devise plans to free Jim, who has meanwhile been taken prisoner by *well-meaning* folk who intend to return him to his 'rightful owners', is just delightful. I laughed out loud at Tom Sawyer's insistence on coming up with the most complicated schemes so that Jim's escape would be like what he's read about in adventure novels.
The repeated use of the "N" word and references to slavery at first disturbed me, but the historical context of the story and Twain's obvious abolitionist stance made them tolerable in the circumstances. Elija Wood's narration brought the colorful dialects to life and was generally wonderful—definitely recommended
At first, I was thinking Elijah didn't create very distinct voices for each character, and it bothered me a little. He did speak differently for each character, but it wasn't a full-on change of voice as you might hear in other books.
Then as I listened, I realized Huck was speaking for all the characters -- telling what happened. We weren't supposed to be listening to the characters having conversations -- we were listening to Huck relating his conversations back to us, the readers.
And then it all fell into place.
Mark Twain is a great storyteller, and Elijah Wood really made it come alive. I always thought Huck Finn was a troublemaker, and was truly surprised to find out that Tom Sawyer was the instigator, not Huck.
The recording includes all the language as originally written by Mark Twain, and I truly think that is the right thing to do. It's how the people talked and thought back when the story was written, and you can't change that. All we can do is learn from the past and change how we act today.
I got so invested in how life would turn out for Huck and Jim. Elijah and Twain really made me care about them both.
I highly recommend this story to anyone looking for a "page turner".
Very good book. Well narrated! Thanks to Audible for having this in store! I would recommend this to my friends and family.
Elija Wood made Mark Twain's humor and dialect come alive in the multiple characters. He made it real and personal.
This was my first Mark Twain book and I completely enjoyed it. Mr. Wood's young-sounding voice was completely believable and I had no problem imagining I was listening to Huck tell about his adventures. My experience with this book far surpasses those I have had with any other audio book. Thank you Audible!
This is truly one of the masterpieces of American literature and the narrator, Elijah Wood, gives an excellent reading of the work. His voice changes to match characters and the story flows along so well. I hated when it ended.
One of the best listens I have had from Audible.
I'm a web developer based out of Sacramento, I listen to books while I work, and love audible.
Brilliant and hilarious, one of the few books I've read that actually had me laughing (hell the only book). Twain is brilliant, the way he can show how ridiculous certain things in society are.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
It's been decades since I've even thought about Tom and Huck . . . and what better way to meet up with Huck Finn again that this great performance by Elijah Wood. I thoroughly enjoyed it!
Christian, Texan, electrician, lover of reading-I lean towards Sci-fi/fantasy but enjoy the classics, history, and science titles also.
I would choose freeing, educational, and fun.
Huck of course. The youth is surprisingly wise and innocent at the same time allowing for some outrageous circumstance.
I am very pleased I experienced Huck Finn through Mr. Woods' masterful performance. His accent, cadence, and affectation of each character was a wonder in and of itself.
This young man was really treated poorly in many instances specifically by his Paps. By today's standards the boy would have been traumatized for life. All this he took in stride. Yes, I felt very sorry for him on more than one occasion.
I would highly recommend this performance specifically for the narration of Elijah Woods. However I will add it would be difficult to reconcile the use of the common term for black slave at the time to how I raise my children today. Although I get it I am afraid they might not.
Elijah Wood does a spirited reading of this beloved classic. You can't go wrong with Mark Twain. A fun book that is always entertaining no matter where you pick up into the story. I like to have this playing as I fall asleep at night.
"A great adventure story"
In its own right, this book is a simple, first-person adventure story and greatly enjoyable. Written in 1884, it incorporates the attitudes and culture of the time and as it is set in the deep south during a time of racial inequality, there are attitudes, expressions and words used that may shock or offend some people. This book is now a historical reference to a time gone by. The current debate regarding one US publishers decision to remove racial terminology from it has brought this book into the news for all the wrong reasons. People should be allowed to witness history unsullied by current obsessions with political correctness - witnessing both right and wrong is what educates us.
The narration by Elijah Wood is excellent. His youthful voice and excellent characterisation make this a great listening experience.
"a great reading!"
of course it's still 'huckleberry finn', a wonderful novel,alive with characters and colour and action.but this fine reading made it all the more enjoyable as the varying accents and speech rhythms are all part of the book's charm.
"Classic evocation of a particular era"
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a great evocation of a particular era in American history. The attitudes displayed, especially towards race and slavery, are shocking to modern ears and I had to keep reminding myself that the book was not only set, but also written in a very different time and place. I loved the variety of characters, all very real yet memorably larger than life, and I’m sure Elijah Wood’s expert narration was a major part of my enjoyment. His portrayal of all the dialects and accents was fabulous. I think even Dickens would have been proud of the King and the Duke! Having not read any Mark Twain as a child, I expect some of the excitement of the adventures was lost on me – I did get a little bored by the intricacies of the plot at Aunt Sally’s – but the major part of the book detailing Huck’s escape from his abusive father and his and Jim’s journey down the river had me completely hooked and even a little envious at times.
It's been a long time since I read Huckleberry Finn, and I had forgotten how much depth there was in the novel, and how much Mark Twain used it to attack the issues and attitudes related to slavery in the Southern States. The movingly, if unsentimentally depicted friendship between Huck and Jim, whom he helps to escape from slavery, and Huck's ruminations on how very sinful he must be to 'steal' Jim from Miss Watson are, even now, powerful indictments against racism.
Elijah Wood is an ideal narrator for this tale, which is, more than anything, good fun.
"Deep South in your ears!"
Brilliantly read by Elijah wood. Got the accent spot on i reckon. A little difficult to listen to in places and the language and wording drags a little but it's a classic book and thoroughly recommend :)
Absolutely wonderful. Beautifully narrated - a stellar performance by Elijah Wood who brought the story to life.
"Very Good Narration!"
It was very well narrated.
I have not but this one us very good.
For me it took 3 sittings, about 3 hours each.
Everyone should read this book ,
And Elijah Wood dose a fantastic job reading this book ,
I think people should listen to this .
"A slow, meandering journey"
The performance is great and really brings all the characters alive with their distinctive Southern voices. The story, however, and I feel churlish in admitting this, had me a little bored at times. This is one of those I wanted to read and thereby cross it off the "books to read before you die" and am glad I have...but equally am glad to have finished it.
"Elijah Wood is superb!"
Authentic, engrossing, nostalgic
Elijah's Wood's amazing variety of accents.
The drifting down the Mississippi past St Louis.
It made me think back to childhood when I last read this book, and reminded me what a great book it is.
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