The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn [With Bonus E-Book]
Mark Twain. Tantor Media, $34.99 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-4001-0631-8
Considered the first great American novel, part of Finn's charm is the wisdom and sobering social criticism deftly lurking amongst the seemingly innocent observations of the uneducated Huck and the even-less-educated escaped slave, Jim. William Dufris's voice, unpretentious and disarming, like the book's main characters, seems the perfect armature on which to hang this literary strategy. Although he does an expert job with the entire cast, Dufris's delivery of Jim's dialogue is his crowning achievement. Out of context, Dufris's Jim might sound mocking and racist, due to his expert delivery of Twain's regional vernacular. Ignorance and intelligence, however, are not mutually exclusive, and taken as a whole, Jim's mind and heart come shining through, allowing the listener to reflect on their own assumptions. Tantor Media includes the entire text as a digital e-book on the final CD, a wise and thoughtful move in a market with swift and changing currents.
Reviewed on: 03/17/2008