Monday, December 4, 2017

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court-Book Review

by Mark Twain (c) 1889
A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain, published in 1889, begins when Hank Morgan, the protagonist suffers a blow to the head "during a disagreement conducted with crowbars" and wakes up to find himself in 6th century England.

He proceeds to amaze and astound the people of the sixth century with his modern skills and inventions, beginning with his ability to convince them that he caused a total solar eclipse which he knew was going to happen, and from there, he continues to astound and amaze almost everyone except for Merlin.

The story wasn't just a fun story to read, but an honest look at societal injustices, not just of the 6th century, but of the 19th, and to be honest, of the current century as well. I enjoyed Mark Twain's satire, and writing style. I especially liked his skill with writing Shakespearean dialogue.

I had to force my disbelieve to be suspended a bit, because in all honesty, people were not saying "I wit not what ye say," in 6th century England. They were speaking a language, similar to that of the original Beowulf which no one from our day would be able to understand unless you'd studied the language of that time. The language Twain presented was more from Shakespeare's time; a bit more understandable than Beowulf, or even Chaucer. Also, many scenes seemed to drag on and on with little to move the story forward. I understand why they were there, when Twain was trying to make some moral or societal point, but still they dragged, and it took a fair effort from me to stay in the story.  But overall, I really liked it, and I recommend it as a great, enjoyable classic.

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