Book Review of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (Dover Thrift Editions)

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (Dover Thrift Editions)
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This is a book that was very much recommended by my mother. I was really excited when I found it at the Baltimore Book Thing for free and immediately took it home and tried to read it. I got about 2 pages in and was asleep -- one of the most boring things I'd ever read. I tried again 2 or 3 times during the course of 2010 and 2011, but never got past those first few pages.

So in 2012, I added this book to a challenge list for a group I'm in here on GoodReads -- the top 10 books I just "had to have" but still haven't read. If we finished those 10 books, we would get 25 bonus points for other challenges. This I deemed to be a good motivator. It worked, I read this book! (though I only read 8 of the 10 total, so no bonus points for me).

Aaanyway, it turns out that once you get past the first few pages (the "Word of Explanation") and into the actual story, the book gets a LOT better. So I'm glad I forced myself through. But don't skip the Explanation, even though it is incredibly boring, because it covers some very important information that you'll need in order to understand much of the book. Now, that's not to say it's an amazing story... and also the vocabulary is still a bit old since it was written so long ago.

But parts of it are quite funny, and it is a nice sort of "what if" situation. Twain did a great job of imagining how the characters from these two very different times would react to each other. It's a good commentary on society and technology and capitalism, but without being a tedious essay. It's a bit odd how there are no repercussions of his changes to the olden days; when he "returns" to the future it seems to be exactly the same as it was before. I would have thought people would find some trace of the knowledge that he imparted there.

Anyway, a cute book... I'm glad I read it once, but probably not one I will be returning to.