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Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood | [Mark Twain]

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood

A Signature Performance: Elijah Wood becomes the first narrator to bring a youthful voice and energy to the story, perhaps making it the closest interpretation to Twain’s original intent.
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Audible Editor Reviews

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.

Publisher's Summary

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.

Public Domain (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

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  •  
    Ilana Montreal, Quebec, Canada 04-17-12
    Ilana Montreal, Quebec, Canada 04-17-12 Member Since 2014

    Audiobooks have literally changed my life. I now actually ENJOY doing mindless chores because they give me plenty of listening time!

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    "Delightful"

    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

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Evans Central New Jersey 01-26-12
    D. Evans Central New Jersey 01-26-12 Member Since 2008
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    "Great Story, Elijah Wood was great - 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".

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meena Newark, NJ, United States 02-17-11
    Meena Newark, NJ, United States 02-17-11 Member Since 2010
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    "Good book worth listening"

    Very good book. Well narrated! Thanks to Audible for having this in store! I would recommend this to my friends and family.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Walt Fayetteville, AR, United States 12-23-10
    Walt Fayetteville, AR, United States 12-23-10 Member Since 2007
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    "Huckleberry Finn"

    Elija Wood made Mark Twain's humor and dialect come alive in the multiple characters. He made it real and personal.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fred Harlan, KY, United States 12-13-10
    Fred Harlan, KY, United States 12-13-10 Member Since 2010
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    "Excellence"

    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!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Larry Nicholasville, KY, United States 12-06-10
    Larry Nicholasville, KY, United States 12-06-10
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    "Excellent even if you have read or heard it before"

    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.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    aaron gilbert Pearland, TX United States 03-12-14
    aaron gilbert Pearland, TX United States 03-12-14 Member Since 2013

    Christian, Texan, electrician, lover of reading-I lean towards Sci-fi/fantasy but enjoy the classics, history, and science titles also.

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    "A classic very enjoyably performed"
    If you could sum up Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood in three words, what would they be?

    I would choose freeing, educational, and fun.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Huck of course. The youth is surprisingly wise and innocent at the same time allowing for some outrageous circumstance.


    What does Elijah Wood bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    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.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    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.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Betty 11-18-13
    Betty 11-18-13

    diverduck

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    ""Adventures" is spot on!"
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristi Richardson Milwaukie, OR, United States 10-09-12
    Kristi Richardson Milwaukie, OR, United States 10-09-12 Member Since 2014

    An old broad that enjoys books of all types. Would rather read than write reviews though. I know what I like, and won't be bothered by crap.

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    "Classic story with a great Narrator!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood to be better than the print version?

    A classic is always a classic, but a narrator can make or break an audible version. Elijah Wood is stupendous as Huck Finn. I enjoyed this book because he narrated it.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood?

    I loved his dialects and my favorite part was when he was with the Duke of Bilgewater and the Dolphin. It was great the way he saw right past them but decided to play along anyway, at least until he noticed them hurting innocent people.


    What about Elijah Wood’s performance did you like?

    He seemed to ooze the part of Huckleberry and his dialects were great. When the real heirs came along from England and exposed the Duke and King, his English accent was wonderful and very noticeable against the con man's attempts at one.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    They have and I believe Elijah Wood is Huck in it but...The Great Adventure awaits!


    Any additional comments?

    Loved this book!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gale Utah 08-22-12
    Gale Utah 08-22-12 Member Since 2014
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    "A Masterpiece"
    What about Elijah Wood’s performance did you like?

    I'd rather listen to Elijah Wood read this than read the book myself. I can not imagine a more perfectly paired reader and text.


    Any additional comments?

    I love Ernest Hemingway's comment about this book. "The good writers are Henry James, Stephen Crane, and Mark Twain. That's not the order they're good in. There is no order for good writers.... All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called 'Huckleberry Finn.' If you read it you must stop where Jim is stolen from the boys. That is the real end. The rest is just cheating. But it's the best book we've had. All American writing comes from that. There was nothing before. There has been nothing as good since." -- from Ernest Hemingway, "The Green Hills of Africa" (1934)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-20 of 199 results PREVIOUS12320NEXT
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  • Peter
    Beulah, United Kingdom
    1/18/11
    Overall
    "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.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Brian
    westfield cottage,blairgowrie,perthshireUnited Kingdom
    2/12/11
    Overall
    "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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Stephanie Jane
    a caravan somewhere in Europe
    10/25/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "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.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Evie
    BIRMINGHAM, United Kingdom
    4/14/13
    Overall
    "Huck Finn"

    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.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    12/3/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Elijah Wood is superb!"
    If you could sum up Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood in three words, what would they be?

    Authentic, engrossing, nostalgic


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood?

    Elijah's Wood's amazing variety of accents.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    The drifting down the Mississippi past St Louis.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me think back to childhood when I last read this book, and reminded me what a great book it is.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ruth
    12/1/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classically Wonderful."
    Where does Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is a very good rendering of the classic Mark Twain story concerning Huckleberry Finn. Elijah Wood brings the text to life with a sensitive reading and a very good attempt at differentiating the various dialects spoken by the many beautifully drawn characters.


    What other book might you compare Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood to, and why?

    Most of us are aware of this story as the sequel to Tom Sawyer, and in many cases it has been studied as literature in school. This reading of the book repairs some of the damage done by poor English teaching, in that the story is made accessible and enjoyable without all the dissection done in literature classes.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Speaking as someone who has had books 'ruined' in such ways, it was delightful to just listen to the story on its own merits and as such it showcased Mark Twain's wit and his astute observation of human nature.


    Any additional comments?

    It is an absolute joy to add this to my library as a book to listen to again and again purely for the joy of the storytelling without having to worry about O Level grades!! (and yes, that does show my age!)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • GenKan
    8/8/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Elijah Wood saves the day"
    Would you try another book written by Mark Twain or narrated by Elijah Wood?

    Elijah yes, Twain no

    Didnt like the book, couldnt relate and it just didnt speak to me.


    Has Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood put you off other books in this genre?

    not really, next time Im going way more fantasy


    Could you see Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Signature Performance by Elijah Wood being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

    I dont think so


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Arnhem, Netherlands
    5/26/11
    Overall
    "A real Treat"

    I am a huge fan of Elijah Wood and I love the Huckleberry Finn story but I found Elijah's way of reading with the American dialect very tiresome.
    English is not my native language, so that is probably the reason.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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