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Mark Twain | Adapted ClassicsBlog Posts

Mark Twain’s Carnival of Crime Exaggeration (Redux)

A carnival of Mark Twain exaggerations is on full display in one of our Adapted Classics stories, “The Facts Concerning the Recent Carnival of Crime in Connecticut”. You can now find digital versions of this irreverent tale at both Apple Books and Amazon. If you are reluctant to spend a coupla bucks to test your tolerance or taste for Twain’s irreverence, both sites offer a preview of the book before you make an investment.  This story would be a useful tool for showing middle school students how exaggeration works as humor. It would also be useful in a lesson that contrasts[…] Read More

Twain’s Carnival of Exaggerations

Witty Mark Twain’s trickery usually got people to snicker or chuckle, but Twain’s carnival of exaggerations more often made them laugh. Twain used and blended many comic forms, including witty jokes, puns, ludicrous impressions, irony, sarcasm, satire, and understatement. But very often he relied upon exaggeration to great comic effect. Like many humorists before him, Twain learned too much of anything, taken playfully, makes people laugh. But as mentioned in a previous post, a playful audience for humor is essential. For instance, if sensitive to the violent use of firearms, as many of us are after so many massacres at[…] Read More

Mark Twain Made Mischievous Fun

Mark Twain made mischievous fun as a boy, and he never stopped making such fun. The practical jokes he played in his youth laid a foundation for some of the humor that would make him famous. According to some, all witty geniuses, Mark Twain included, developed their sense of humor after first playing pranks as children. I’m not sure about the truth of this. I would hope it were not so. Still, if it were to be true, anticipating this end result would probably provide some comfort to whomever has to raise a child prankster. In essence, pranks embody tricks[…] Read More

The Humor of Twain, Poe, and Hawthorne

Comparing the humor of Twain, Poe, and Hawthorne would be an excellent way to introduce middle school students to classic literature. It’s hard to imagine a topic that would be more interesting to middle school students than humor. You just know a classroom discussion about humor would be fun for teacher and students. And it would be educational too, of course. Humor takes many forms that are worth knowing about. And Twain, Poe, and Hawthorne are worth knowing about too, and the sooner the better. All of them used humor to make or enhance classic stories that have added texture[…] Read More

Eve and Adam Have Nothin’ to Offer

When it comes to female objectification, Eve and Adam have nothin’ to offer those who want to know why males objectify females. Mark Twain didn’t directly delve into that topic when he wrote his creation stories. But he did recreate the first heterosexual couple, and he did exaggerate certain gender-specific tendencies in each character. Readers in his day would have recognized these masculine and feminine tendencies as legitimate. After all, Mark Twain was anything but stupid. He built his humor on the bedrock of exaggeration and understatement. And you know he understood how to use those comic devices! He knew[…] Read More

News – Eve & Adam Free for Nothin’

My warehouse has been shipping out copies of “Mark Twain’s The Diaries of Eve & Adam“ free for nothin’, but  does that make the news? No – not exactly. Not unless you consider this blog ‘news’. News or not, my warehouse certainly does ship out free for nothin’ new books that we donate to literacy organizations like Reader to Reader and Kids Need to Read. In the past few weeks, 60 library-bound copies of “Mark Twain’s The Diaries of Eve & Adam” went out to each of these two organizations. Both of them provide new and gently-used books to under-resourced public[…] Read More

Banned Books – Mark Twain, Meet Harper Lee

Some public administrators meet and decide that certain books by certain authors like Mark Twain and Harper Lee should be banned because they make readers uncomfortable. Oh, my! Uncomfortable! I’m quite sure that when Harper Lee wrote her celebrated “To Kill a Mockingbird”, she had ‘uncomfortable’ exactly in mind. Since it examined southern culture and questioned its morals, she must have known her book would make some, likely many readers squirm in their skin. Furthermore, she must have hoped such readers would bear their discomfort until the end of the book, then shift whatever perceptions and attitudes had caused their[…] Read More

Fans of Adam Redux – Reconsidering Eve

Fans of Adam might want us to reconsider Eve and apologize for our insults and the violent trip we suggested they take over a waterfall. In anticipation of their desires, we will. Apologies first. Eve was concerned for reckless Adam’s safety. She pressured him to stop going over a waterfall. Like Eve, we are non-violent. So we retract our suggestion that Fans of Adam go over a waterfall in a barrel like Adam did. As far as we are concerned, jumping in a lake is usually safe, so we will stick with that suggestion. Go jump in the lake. As for[…] Read More

Midwest Book Review Recommends “Eve and Adam”

Midwest Book Review recommends “Mark Twain’s The Diaries of Eve and Adam”. You will find their review posted on the Literary Shelf in the October 2017 edition of their e-magazine. It is the first comment we have heard about our newly published book for middle-school readers. Thankfully, it’s a positive one. And we are thankful exactly six times over that Midwest Book Review likes all the books in our Adapted Classics collection of timeless stories for middle-school readers. That someone finally commented on the book pleases us. However, the reviewer disappointed us by quoting Adam’s downer observation about death as the[…] Read More

Fans of Adam – Mark Twain’s The Diaries of Eve and Adam

Fans of Adam might dislike ArtWrite Productions, the publisher of the Adapted Classics book, “Mark Twain’s the Diaries of Eve and Adam”. The reason? The publisher decided to place Eve’s name before Adam’s in the title of the book. This upsets tradition, fans of Adam might say, and you do not upset tradition to appease women or to appeal to them for financial gain (women do buy more books than men, and men almost never buy books for their children). Well, fans of Adam, do you want to know what lake you can jump into? How about the first lake[…] Read More