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The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Timeless Classics

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Timeless Classics


The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Timeless Classics

ratings:
4/5 (146 ratings)
Length:
1 hour
Released:
Jan 1, 2011
ISBN:
9781612474946
Format:
Audiobook

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Also available as bookBook

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Description

Freedom is everything to Huckleberry Finn. How can he avoid being "civilized" by the good-hearted Widow Douglas? But just now Huck has more important things on his mind—like helping his friend Jim escape the slave-catchers!

Released:
Jan 1, 2011
ISBN:
9781612474946
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

Also available as bookBook


About the author

Mark Twain, who was born Samuel L. Clemens in Missouri in 1835, wrote some of the most enduring works of literature in the English language, including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc was his last completed book—and, by his own estimate, his best. Its acquisition by Harper & Brothers allowed Twain to stave off bankruptcy. He died in 1910. 

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What people think about The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

4.0
146 ratings / 187 Reviews
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  • (5/5)
    Twain’s travel narrative is quite beautiful. The characterization of the river will strike anyone but especially those who grew up near water. It is also an excellent example of the social struggles present at the time.
  • (5/5)
    Had to read this long long ago as a high school assignment. Rereading it is much more meaningful now than then.
  • (4/5)
    I really do love this book but those final chapters really make me angry at Mark Twain. Here we have Huck's big revelation that he'll go to hell to save his friend Jim from slavery after the duke and the king sell him out for a bit of whiskey money then who takes over the book but good ol' Tom Sawyer. All of Huck's progress as a character is thrown out the window for Tom Sawyer's crazy schemes for Adventure. Huck has lived the adventure while Tom is merely pretending, having no idea what horrific scenarios Huck has seen that came with the price of said adventure. To free Jim would be a straight forward plan in Huck's mind but Tom has to romanticize it that puts Jim, Huck, and himself in danger. Then Huck and the reader finds out due to Miss. Watson freeing Jim in her will that all of it was for nothing. Does Huck get angry at his friend Tom Sawyer over this fact like a older boy would after seeing people kill each other for reasons they can't remember, a man kill a innocent drunkard in cold blood, two crooks swindle people out of their hard earn money, and grown to see a person who society says isn't a person become a friend and a father figure? Nope, Huck just accepts this as everything is resolved nicely. Thus the failure of those final chapters of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
  • (5/5)
    Yes, yes…this is another instance of not having yet read a book virtually everyone in the English speaking world had read when they were young. Yet it is true…I had never before this past week read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

    In this case I am glad I hadn’t read it before. Having grown up with the Disney-ification of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer I am convinced had I read this as a youth, it would not have made any more an impression on me than any other book of adventure. Having now read it as an adult I can appreciate the biting social and political commentary contained within the story. Themes of slavery and freedom, gender roles, the role of religious worship, class and regional distinctions, and competing economic systems are all contained in the prose….wrapped within a humorous, and exciting adventure story.

    I would absolutely love it if a movie were made of this that was actually true to the book; one that explored all of these themes and didn’t shy away from the ugliness Huck and Jim encounter on their adventure. Coen brothers…are you listening? :)
  • (3/5)
    Check. That's how I feel about this book -- I've read it now, so can cross it off the list.Not sure why I found this one hard going compared to Tom Sawyer. I had expected them to be about the same in terms of difficulty, but Huck Finn has so many plot twists -- might I even dare suggest it sags in the middle? Were huge coincidences more accepted in fiction back in the day, or were huge coincidences actually more likely in a smaller population? I'm talking about the coincidence of Huck meeting up with Jim, and the even bigger coincidence later of Huck turning up at Tom Sawyer's auntie and uncle's house. Then there's the coincidence of meeting up with a whole string of baddies. Were there really that many bad people around to be met?I don't know. All of this is background noise, to a story written by a man with progressive politics. Now I really don't understand all that fuss about the frequent use of 'nigger'. Better instead to turn our aggravation towards stories such as Dead Wood, in which the language is all wrong for the time period. Nothing wrong with 'fuck', but no one talked like that back then, so why insert it? If the word 'nigger' was the word for Huck Finn's time period, then we are obliged to use it. If I never read this as a kid I can see why, despite its always adorning our bookshelves -- the phonetically reproduced dialogue is quite tough to understand for a child of the antipodes. Then there's the different word usage. Not sure I would've known enough about American history or what 'vittles' meant. Honestly, I loved Little House On The Prairie but at no stage did I have an education on how white people entered the American West. Likewise, nothing was ever said at school about American slavery. So I guess it's no wonder I only just got around to reading books like this.
  • (4/5)
    Published, 1885, first published in UK, 1884I listened to the audio read by B. J. HarrisonI thought I had read this before, but now that I have reread it (or not), I can’t say that I remember a thing. This is an adventure, a quest, of Huckleberry Finn, a poor motherless boy with a drunken father who beats him and his adventure on the Mississippi River with the runaway slave, Jim. Jim is running away from slavery because he fears being sold south but ironically Jim and Huck head off, going further and further into slave country as they go down the river. OPENING LINE: You don't know about me, without you have read a book by the name of "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer," but that ain't no matter.QUOTES: "All right, then, I'll go to hell"- and tore it up.”CLOSING LINE: I been there before.The importance of this book is that it is the first American novel written in the vernacular of the characters living in the area along the river. It is a story about slavery but was written after slavery was abolished. It is a satire of entrenched racism. This book has been banned and may even still be banned because of its language and use of the racial slur “nigger” or more politely said, “the n word”. The book really is antiracist. Huckleberry Finn spends time on the raft with Jim who he promises not to turn in. Huck feels he is sinning by not turning in the runaway and finally reconciles by saying “all right, then, I’ll go to hell”. While on the raft, Huck gets to know a black man. MY REACTION: as I said in the beginning, I was surprised not to remember anything about this book. I must have only read Tom Sawyer. so glad I decided to reread. I think it is definitely a young person’s novel. I liked the first part best, the trip with Jim down the river and I liked the part least where Tom joins Huck and play the prank on Tom’s relatives. The use of the “n” word is so frequent and with our current awareness that this word is distasteful, it was distracting. Because it is a classic adventure story that occurs on the Mississippi River, I do think it holds a special place in American literature. What I liked best was the River, the Mississippi River is such a great river character in literature. I rated it 3 stars, mostly for enjoyment factor, I think it just didn’t work as well as it would have would I have been reading it in sixth grade.
  • (4/5)
    This book adapts the story of Huckleberry Finn’s journey down the river for low-level readers, while keeping intact the characters and themes that have made the story a classic. Greatly simplified, the book would be a useful tool for teaching basic reading skills, while exposing the reader to cultural reference points and preparing them to tackle the original novel once their reading level has improved. The adapted story progresses much more quickly than the original, decreasing the chance that struggling readers’ interest will be overshadowed by the effort of reading the text. The quicker pacing can feel awkward at times, but so much that it would confuse or distract the reader. A few black and white illustrations throughout provide breaks from the text, alleviating readers’ fatigue. Chapters are a few pages long, and each page contains about fifteen large-print lines. Paragraphs are composed of several short sentences, which usually have only one or two simple clauses. Because of its clear storytelling and simplified language and structure, this adaptation is a useful introduction to classic literature for readers who are not ready for the original novel. It is a solid educational tool for remedial older readers as well as precocious younger ones. Table of contents. Recommended. Grades 5-12.
  • (5/5)
    Probably my number one book of all time. The language, the voice, the stories, the sense of what it means to be an American.
  • (4/5)
    I liked this book a lot. The experience of encapsulating every chapter into a poem was a fun but challenging experience. Twain had a lot more than just a kids book in mind when he wrote this book. He was writing to all people who were caught up in the political question of the time: "Should one leave slavery alone, or do something about this issue?"

    I however, did grow tired of Tom and felt like grabbing him by the lapels and screaming, "Grow up Kid!" But it was merely a book, and Tom Sawyers merely a fictional character, so I restrained myself.

    This book is an astute answer to the political cross hairs of the nineteenth century.
  • (5/5)
    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Lots of humor. The travels of Huck Finn and the free slave, Jim down the Mississippi River and they hook up with Tom Sawyer at his aunts and uncles house.
  • (3/5)
    Author Mark TwainTitle Adventures of Huck FinnIllustrator nonePublisher Dover PublicationsDate 1994Page numbers 224Short Summary: This book is about Huck he is not thrilled with his new life of cleanliness manners church or even going to school. Tom Sawyer tells him in order to take part in Tom's new robber gang Huck must stay respectable. All is good until Huck's drunk of a father Pap repapers in town and wants Huck's money. The Judge judge Thatcher tries to get custody of Huck. Huck father beats him takes him out to the woods and beats him. Huck fakes his death by killing a pig and leaving the blood all over the place he is on this island and after a few days of being on this island he comes across Jim who is black. These two become friends throughout this while book.Tags and subject headings would be friendship and not judging people.My Response: I liked this book I thought it did a very good job of how people shouldn't judge people just because of the color of their skin. This book shows loyal friendship throughout.
  • (3/5)
    In seinem berühmtesten Werk lässt Mark Twain die bereits aus seinem Roman "Tom Sawyers Abenteuer" bekannten Figuren erneut auftreten. Diesmal ist die Geschichte in der Ich-Perspektive aus Sicht des ungebildeten, am Rande der Gesellschaft lebenden Huckleberry Finn verfasst. Dieser reisst von zu Hause vor seinem alkoholkranken und prügelnden Vater aus und reist gemeinsam mit dem entlaufenen Negersklaven Jim auf einem Floß den Mississippi flußabwärts. Dabei bestehen die beiden zahlreiche Abenteuer und werden in diverse Gaunereien verwickelt anlässlich derer Huckleberry Finn immer wieder Gelegenheit bekommt, sein grundgutes Wesen zu offenbaren.Sprachlich bemerkenswert ist,dass sämtliche Protagonisten nicht in der Hochsprache sondern in ihren eigenen Dialekten, quasi so wie ihnen der Schnabel gewachsen ist, sprechen. Twain sorgt so für Authenzität zu Lasten der Lesbarkeit. Die aus Sicht eines die (Erwachsenen)-Welt gerade erst entdeckenden, staunenden Kindes gezogenen Rückschlüsse sowie satirische Seitenhiebe des Autors bringen den Leser immer wieder zum Schmunzeln. Trotzdem hat mich das Werk nicht überzeugt, zu hanebüchen sind die geschilderten Abenteuer und Wendungen.
  • (5/5)
    I grew up just a few miles south of Hannibal, Missouri, one of the many towns in the US that calls itself Mark Twain's hometown. In third grade, our class trip was to Mark Twain Cave, where the tour tells about Tom Sawyer's fictional adventures in the cave. In college, I got a summer job as a tour guide in Hannibal, MO, riding on a trolley and telling stories about Mark Twain, the cave, the river, and other interesting points of interest. As a result, I know a bit about Tom Sawyer. However, Huck Finn didn't figure into the tour much. After all, Huck leaves Hannibal near the beginning of his book, taking off down the Mississippi River with an escaped slave named Jim. So it was fun to revisit this book. I remembered very few of the details of Huck's adventures, but fell right back into Mark Twain's comic and observant writing style. Huck is a resourceful boy, which is good because he is always getting into trouble. I found myself wishing that Huck would learn from his previous adventures occasionally because he always seemed to be getting into the same scrapes. But his relationship with Jim develops as they go down the river on a raft together with Jim looking out for Huck even when Huck doesn't realize it. This made me want to revisit Tom Sawyer, which I have read in years, and maybe branch out into some of Mark Twain's other stories.
  • (4/5)
    This book is fun. I have heard it criticized as racist, but I generally get the opposite impression from Mark Twain's books, that he opposed slavery and racism. I don't think that was a major point in the book anyway, and it gets a lot more discussion than it warrants. Huck and Jim are both intelligent and likeable characters.
  • (3/5)
    Yeah, I wasn't terribly impressed by this book. It started out good enough, but by the middle it was just like pulling teeth. All that stuff with the Duke and the King and all that stupid stuff just bored me tears. It was all I could do to read ten pages a night. And then I absolutely hated the end of it, it just seemed so stupid, and entirely heartless to make such a game of helping a man escape from slavery. I didn't find it funny at all...rather I found it pretty disgusting.

    And even though I knew that the language was accurate according to the dialect of the time, I'm a 21st century girl, and couldn't help but feel disgusted and actually offended by the attitudes and language. It's just constant, and Twain entirely embraces just about every negative stereotype possible to use in this book. I can completely understand why this book has been banned, even if the greater themes of it are not racist at all. I think it's just one of those books that it's hard to see past what's on the surface, especially by those of us raised to the greater sensitivity of the 21st century.
  • (5/5)
    Huck Finn's voyage with Jim holds much significance and is still debated today. Read it and you decide what it means, but I'll say this- this book is about friendship, war, crime, unjustified hate and prejudice, religion and freedom and still manages to stay lighthearted. Worth it.
  • (5/5)
    What can i say about this book? Grand? Listened to a reading by Elijah Wood. Fine young man. Score!!!!!
  • (3/5)
    Interesting, but not exactly riveting. I had to take it in short bursts, because it was very episodic (IMO).
  • (4/5)
    This would be good to use when talking about the mid 1880s and life on the Mississippi. I think students will like this book because the crazy situations Huck gets into.
  • (5/5)
    This is a wonderful American classic that deals with the issues of the antebellum south, harsh and overbearing parents, and the challenges of an active and growing boy. Huck finds adventure where ever he goes. I would recommend this as a read for all children in the 7th and 8th grade. It is timeless.
  • (4/5)
    I like the lessons in Huck Fin as well as in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. A book that is a staple in anyone's Classics' collection.
  • (4/5)
    Tom Sawyer's behavior at the end seriously annoyed me!
  • (3/5)
    What’s to even be said about this book? It’s Twain’s greatest accomplishment. It manages to undertake a variety of difficult themes (i.e. race relations) and make it possible for a seventeen year old to not only understand it, but be inspired by it.

    Down with censorship. Twain wrote what he meant. He was probably smarter than you, PTA president-soccer mom-Volvo-driving-bitch.
  • (5/5)
    I think I was intimidated from reading Huckleberry Finn earlier in my life because it has too many times been designated "the great American novel." I had no idea how much fun it was!

    I may have benefited from the fact that I did this as an audio book, and the reader was gifted in doing all the dialects of the characters which may have been thick on printed page. It was like being in the room with a great raconteur--which, of course, is exactly what Mark Twain was.

    WARNING: Huckleberry Finn has been banned by some schools because of its liberal use of the "N" word to refer to African-Americans. And sometimes the use of the word feels pretty overwhelming. Furthermore, although embedded in the book is the understanding that humanity transcends skin color, the way blacks are portrayed is not enlightened, looked at through a 21st-century lens, But if some leeway can be granted, given the cultural consciousness of the time of its writing, there much to delight in here.
  • (5/5)
    Summary: In the book The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain Huckleberry Finn is faced with many decisions.One of them that he often faces is to follow his friends or not.Because sometimes that can lead him into trouble. In one adventure that he goes on is trying to free a slave. This leads him into some trouble with some people that he stayed overnight with. Who tell him if he sees a slave to bring it up the river because their is a cash reward. while they are talking about it the slave he is he's helping is sleeping on the raft they are traveling on. I enjoyed this book! I read it in high school and was confused but read it again a year ago and loved it. Very brilliant. I would use this book in a classroom by letting them watch the movie and ask questions afterward on how it affected them.
  • (4/5)
    This one took me a while to get through, but it was rewarding in the end. Huck is such a loveable character, from his innocence and naivety to the humour he brings throughout, he really is one the most memorable characters in the entirety of fiction. I really enjoyed the sections with the king and the duke, but it probably did take a turn for the worst towards the end I won't give it away but I nearly gave myself a headache from rolling my eyes.
  • (4/5)
    I really should open this commentary with the notice that Mark Twain posts at the beginning of the story: Persons attempting to find a motive in this narrative will be prosecuted; persons attempting to find a moral in it will be banish; persons attempting to find a plot in it will be shot. - By Order of the Author.Okay, with that out of the way I get an impression that pretty much every English Teacher and University lecture that has gone on to study this book in detail and to discuss this with their students should be either prosecuted, banished, or shot. Okay, I haven't actually attempted to find a motive, moral, or plot, and I have not actually studied this book in any form of educational institution, so I guess I am safe there, but then again being a student is probably somewhat safer in this context than being a teacher.Therefore, I think I should open this commentary by saying: anybody thinking that this commentary is about a motive will be prosecuted, anybody thinking this is about a moral will be banished, and anybody thinking this is about a plot will be shot (okay, let us leave out the shooting part). By order of myself. However, I hope that I am actually allowed to talk about what I have gathered from this book, despite the fact that I highly doubt Mark Twain was serious when he wrote the foreword.This is a story about a boy and an escaped slave who travel down the Mississippi in search of adventure and freedom. As with the other story I have read of Twain's, I don't think he wanted people to read it from an academic standpoint, because as we all know, when we are forced to study a book in school and then forced to write an essay on that particular book, we lose all enjoyment out of that book. That is probably why I read a lot of fantasy novels in High School and stayed away from the classics, namely because of the fact that we had to read them indepth, and find morals and meanings rather than simply enjoying the adventure.This story, though, I believe, is about freedom. Jim and Huck travel down the river on a raft searching for freedom, which in many cases is elusive. Jim is a Negro, which in those times generally meant that he was a slave. Even though this book was written after the abolition of slavery, Negroes in America found, and still find, that freedom is elusive. While they may not be slaves in name, many are still slaves to backward racist attitudes and, in many cases, poverty. Take the civil rights movement in the United States which was sparked by a Negro woman who refused to move to the back of the bus (though as a high school student, we loved the back of the bus).Huck is a different story, in that it is not because he is black, but rather because he did not grow up in the same way that his friend Tom Sawyer grew up. As far as we know he has no mother, and his father was the town drunk that would beat him and use him for his own purposes. This story begins after Tom Sawyer ends (which basically makes it a sequel), with the widow trying to civilise Huck, but he hates it, and even though Tom tries to free him by creating an imaginary world of pirates and robbers, Huck knows that this is not true freedom. However, his father returns to the town, and Huck's freedom is curtailed even more, at which point he flees, meets Jim, and travels down the river.Even then this quest for freedom is elusive. At one point he meets a family that is at war with another family, and in a way we see how the cycle of anger and hate seems to keep these people enslaved. They are forever fighting each other, over generations, until the whole reason behind this war is forgotten and all they know is that they hate each other, and this war continues because they have forgotten why it even started and it has become the status quo. In many cases we can see this today, where the reason behind a war is forgotten, and people fight just because (take the idea of the French and the English, who traditionally hate each other, but there is no reason or memory as to why they hate each other except for the fact that they are neighbours).Then there is the Duke and the King, a couple of con artists who are travelling from town to town stealing from people through lies and deceit. At first Huck and Jim rescue them because they believe they are helping them out, but then it becomes obvious that these two are not all that nice and innocent. In fact we learn that in some cases they are a reflection of Huck's father. Even when Huck attempts to escape from them after they anger a whole town with one of their confidence tricks, they both seem to escape but they catch up with Huck again, at which point Huck needs to pull a fast one himself.It is funny how the confidence trickster can be connected with the slave owner, and I have seen it myself in my own life. They use find sounding arguments, and offers of friendship to slip themselves into your life, and they begin to leech off of you to support their own habits, but you never seem to be able to get away from them. It is like the drug user enslaved to their habit who cannot get away from the habit not because of his own desire, but because all of his friends are enslaved as well. So it is with the confidence trickster, who becomes your friend and slowly alienates you from all your other friends to the point where the only friend you have is the trickster.While many of you already know how the book ends, I am loathe to make a comment on it anyway. The question we may ask though is whether the main characters have found their freedom. That is not a question that I am going to answer but rather let you decide that for yourself.
  • (4/5)
    On my first day after moving to Melbourne I walked from Jamie’s house in Brunswick all the way down into the CBD, and on the way I stopped in at Brunswick Bound and – this being a time when I purchased books at a ratio three times greater than I was reading them – picked up a Penguin edition of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. I didn’t get around to reading it until three years later, in my last week before moving out of Melbourne, which is a pleasing little reflection, no less so for the fact that I did it deliberately.I’ve never before read The Great American Novel, but it’s amazing how much of it already existed in my subconscious thanks to being referenced and imitated in so many other works of art – Huck Finn and the nigger Jim going down the Mississippi on a raft, obviously, but also the thieves in the wrecked paddle steamer, the two conmen who claim to be a duke and a king, and the hiding of money inside a coffin. It’s also interesting, though, how the book doesn’t conform to what I’d thought it would be – a novel about an unlikely friendship between a black slave and a white boy, the boy trying to help the slave escape to the free states. Huck is actually deeply torn about helping Jim escape, believing it to be wrong, and comes close to turning him in more than once. And the book – like The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, which it’s a direct sequel to, another fact I didn’t realise – is more a string of interconnected encounters than a straightforward novel. Which brings me to the book’s disappointing conclusion, in which Jim is recaptured and Huck’s friend Tom Sawyer uses his captivity as a means of playing out all his romantic fantasies about rescuing prisoners from adventure novels he’s read – digging tunnels, scratching messages in tins, baking rope ladders in pies etc. This joke runs for a hundred pages too long, becomes insufferable, and drags the book down into sheer farce.Which is a shame, because for the most part The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a good, fun adventure novel with solid literary foundations, and an interesting history; part of the reason it’s considered the first great American novel is because it was the first written in an American dialect – Huck’s twangy, conversational Missouri narration. I can’t say I deeply loved it or was swept away by it, but that’s the way with these things. I’m always happy just to find a 19th century novel that’s easy to read.
  • (5/5)
    Huckleberry Finn's language dances out of the pages, vibrant, forceful, colorful, and colloquial. In fact, in the introduction Twain notes that he, in fact, uses four distinct dialects, Huck's, Jim the slave's, and some other regional variations. The language retains its potency, in fact is even edgier today since the "N" word is used so routinely and casually. What surprised me after such a long hiatus (having first read the book when I was around Huck's age) was the cruelty of some of the novel's character and the naked brutality and violence, not to mention the moral import. Because this book does not skirt around the central question of slavery, and questions in such a profound way this Great Issue and American dilemma, if not original sin, this book triumphs as a paragon of great American classic fiction in a way that Tom Sawyer, for all its boyish charm, simply cannot.
  • (5/5)
    I read "Huckleberry Finn" in high school. In the intervening years, whenever I would hear that this book was being challenged or censored or banned from school districts, I would inevitably scoff. How could people be so closed-minded, I would think to myself, as to overlook the redeeming values of this text, one that has proven so accessible to students over the last century as a portrait of the evils of slavery, just because of the offensive nature of one historically-accurate word used within it.I've doubled in age since I first picked up the book, and just finished reading it again. And here's what I didn't remember: This book is harsh. Huck Finn isn't an abolitionist, just an opportunist who won't feel too bad if he accidentally gets taken for one. While he struggles to reconcile Jim's kindnesses towards him with everything he has been taught about slaves as property, and ultimately helps Jim to escape, he doesn't exactly do it for all the right reasons. And while the book is a satire of the time and place about which it was written, it is still the story of a black man filtered through a white person's perspective. Over and over, Huck has adventures while Jim is hiding in the swamp, or in costume in a wigwam, or locked up in a shed. If you were to tell the story from Jim's perspective, it would involve a lot of hiding and waiting. Our collective memory as a society is somewhat inaccurate; this is not the story of how Huck helps free Jim, but of how Jim helps free the mind and morality of Huck. Seeing the book now, I would question whether high schoolers have the necessary life experience and mentality to get this perspective out of the narrative. But for older readers, the book is worth a second look.The Barnes and Noble edition contains an introduction and notes by Robert G. O'Meally. The first half of the introduction offers insightful critical perspectives, but the second half veers too specifically into O'Meally's own personal academic interests, casting the novel as a precursor to the Blues tradition. The notes, also, can be irritating to educated readers, as they clearly presuppose younger readers with a less developed vocabulary and critical eye. While the edition is still an excellent buy with its attractive binding and affordable price, you might want to ignore the annotations unless you are one of the teenagers in the intended audience for them.