HomeGroupsTalkExploreZeitgeist
Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Life on the Mississippi (1883)

by Mark Twain

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,092462,358 (3.91)208
Fashioned from the same experiences that would inspire the masterpiece Huckleberry Finn, Life on the Mississippi is Mark Twain' s most brilliant and most personal nonfiction work. It is at once an affectionate evocation of the vital river life in the steamboat era and a melancholy reminiscence of its passing after the Civil War, a priceless collection of humorous anecdotes and folktales, and a unique glimpse into Twain' s life before he began to write. Written in a prose style that has been hailed as among the greatest in English literature, Life on the Mississippi established Twain as not only the most popular humorist of his time but also America' s most profound chronicler of the human comedy.… (more)
  1. 110
    The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Finn is, among other things, a novelistic treatment of a raft journey down the Mississippi. Life on the Mississippi is part of the real background of the novel. Readers of one will almost surely enjoy the other. (It is amazing to me that the LibraryThing algorithm does not make this link on its own.)… (more)
  2. 20
    Mark Twain: A Life by Ron Powers (John_Vaughan)
  3. 20
    The Mississippi and the Making of a Nation: From the Louisiana Purchase to Today by Stephen E. Ambrose (John_Vaughan)
  4. 21
    Following the Equator: A Journey Around the World by Mark Twain (John_Vaughan)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 208 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
Had never read this - vintage Twain, but a bit disconnected. Parts were hysterical, parts were educational and parts were, well, mediocre. But a worthy read - made me want to revisit his other works. ( )
  dhaxton | Apr 19, 2022 |
I have to admit, here, to a bias; a prejudice. It’s a bias that I have fought against a spare few times in my life, but by and large, it has ruled my reading life. The bias is this: It is my perverse nature to avoid books and authors considered to be classics.

I know it’s contrary and based on no rational; I just don’t like being told what to do and what to like. Occasionally, the grown-up in me will rear her annoying head and insist that I at least try a classic or two – who knows? I might like it, and I don’t have to finish it if I don’t.

This it is why Life on the Mississippi has been sitting on my TBR shelf; that, and the fact that I found a Folio Society copy for a bargain. I grabbed it earlier this month, figuring that I could fulfil my yen for non-fiction and mark off a classic author at the same time.

The Introduction to my Folio edition doesn’t fill the reader with optimism. The story of Life on the Mississippi‘s creation is interesting, but finding out that fully half the book was considered ‘filler’ is not an auspicious start. The author of the introduction made it sound like Twain just filled out the second half of the book with a hodgepodge collection of other peoples’ articles and anecdotes. Which he does, but what they don’t tell you is that he folds it all into a cohesive narrative that works fairly well, if a little chaotically.

So with this introduction read, I resigned myself and started. What I found was a very time-consuming, but absorbing read, made enjoyable by Twain’s voice and trademark humour. Definitely not riveting, but it draws a picture of life in the late 1800’s that is vivid and brings both a pang of nostalgia for those easier days and a relief not to have been born in that age.

Twain gets full marks for making the life of a steamboat man sound romantic; it’s a testament to his talent that he even makes it interesting to read. And while I can’t say I loved it, or that I’ll ever really re-visit it, except for perhaps to randomly dip in and out, I can say that I feel I got something out of it, if only a better respect for the mighty Mississippi as it once was, wild and independent. ( )
  murderbydeath | Jan 24, 2022 |
Memoir of the steamboat era on the Mississippi River before the American Civil War by Mark Twain, published in 1883.

The book begins with a brief history of the river from its discovery by Hernando de Soto in 1541. Chapters 4–22 describe Twain’s career as a Mississippi steamboat pilot, the fulfillment of a childhood dream. ( )
  Marcos_Augusto | Jan 17, 2022 |
Book my passage now on a Mississippi steam boat cruise. ( )
  auldhouse | Sep 30, 2021 |
Large part travelogue, but offers a unique view into the old meanderings of the Mississippi River and the process of surrounding culture shifting just as the river itself and industrial development shifts.

Mark Twain enjoys spinning a yarn; the stories he collects and recants along the way make the book enjoyable and quite funny in an old fashioned sort of worldview and storytelling way. I enjoyed the look into the culture of the day and the take on humor which I can't recognize existing in modern life.

The particular details, facts and some of the histories of the riverside towns made it tough to get through all 384 pages but it ultimately rewards as a unique time-capsule that I wouldn't have known much about otherwise in modern life. ( )
  micahammon | Dec 19, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (31 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Twain, Markprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bachman, J.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Benton, Thomas HartIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cox, James M.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kriegel, LeonardAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nuorto, OlliTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wagenknecht, EdwardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wager, WillisEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wecter, DixonEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
The Mississippi is well worth reading about.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Life on the Mississippi was written by Samuel Langhorne Clemens, also known as Mark Twain.
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (4)

Fashioned from the same experiences that would inspire the masterpiece Huckleberry Finn, Life on the Mississippi is Mark Twain' s most brilliant and most personal nonfiction work. It is at once an affectionate evocation of the vital river life in the steamboat era and a melancholy reminiscence of its passing after the Civil War, a priceless collection of humorous anecdotes and folktales, and a unique glimpse into Twain' s life before he began to write. Written in a prose style that has been hailed as among the greatest in English literature, Life on the Mississippi established Twain as not only the most popular humorist of his time but also America' s most profound chronicler of the human comedy.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Legacy Library: Mark Twain

Mark Twain has a Legacy Library. Legacy libraries are the personal libraries of famous readers, entered by LibraryThing members from the Legacy Libraries group.

See Mark Twain's legacy profile.

See Mark Twain's author page.

Popular covers

Quick Links

Rating

Average: (3.91)
0.5
1 7
1.5 1
2 25
2.5 2
3 95
3.5 19
4 169
4.5 25
5 126

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 169,940,070 books! | Top bar: Always visible