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THE ADVENTURES OF TOM SAWYER

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known as Mark Twain, is an American writer,


humorist, and lecturer. Mark Twain was born on November 30 1835 in Missouri. His works
include The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and a sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer was written in 1876 and is about a boy named Tom Sawyer
who is based on characteristics from 3 boys who the author knew. Tom grows up in Missouri,
which happens to be the state where Mark Twain grew up in.

Tom Sawyer is a naughty boy who happens to get himself into trouble. He goes on trouble
causing adventures but is a good hearted person. Through the course of the story, he learns
to be matured and become a leader among his friends.

Aunt Polly is the guardian and relative of Tom, Sid, and Mary. In the book, she tries her best
to discipline Tom but struggles of her love for him.

Jim, a young negro boy who is the slave of Aunt Polly.

Sidney is the younger half brother of Tom. He is described as a good boy but often snitches
on Tom to Aunt Polly. Sid loves watching Tom get in trouble.

Mary is the cousin of Tom. She is kind hearted and holy. Mary may be like Sid, but she is soft
on Tom, often helping him in some tasks.

Becky Thatcher is one of the sweethearts of Tom. They broke up because Becky finds out
about Tom’s history with Amy Lawrence. They proceed to go on great lengths to make each
other jealous.

Amy Lawrence is Tom’s former love who he bails on when Becky Thatcher moves into town.

Huckleberry Finn is the juvenile outcast whose father is a drunk. Many boys, like Tom,
hangout with Huck because they are jealous of his freedom.

Joe Harper is the best friend of Tom. He is basically a mirror friend of Tom. As the story
progresses, they begin to diverge and Huckleberry Finn takes his place as the friend of Tom.
Injun Joe is a bad man who kills, commits robbery, and planned to harm the Widow Douglas.
He commits these crimes because he is driven on revenge. As half a Native American, he is
often excluded in society.

Muff Potter is a drunkard and a friend of Injun Joe. He was wrongly accused for murdering
Dr. Robinson. Potter’s trust in Tom pushes Tom to telling the truth about the murder in
Potter’s trial.

Dr. Robinson is a respected physician. He hired Injun Joe and Muff Potter to dig up a body for
medicinal purposes. The night he hires them, he was murdered by Injun Joe.

The Widow Douglas kindhearted woman whom the children recognize as a friend who would
treat them well.

Mr. Sprauge is the minister of the town church.

Judge Thatcher is the county’s judge and the Father of Becky Thatcher. He takes
responsibility in taking care of stuff affecting the whole community.

Alfred Temple is the new well-dressed boy who got into a fight with Tom. Becky pretends to
have a crush on Alfred to make Tom jealous.

Mr. Walters is a Sunday School Superintendent who rewards Tom with a Bible even if he
knew that Tom obtained his tickets by trading.

Mr. Dobbins the schoolmaster who has a sad life. His dream of becoming a doctor was
destroyed and he became one of the town drunks.

The events of the novel take place in St Petersburg, Missouri. St Petersburg is a fictional town
however and is based on where Mark Twain lived as a child. Tom and his friends would also
play on Cardiff Hill. Cardiff Hill is a real location and is located in Mark Twain’s home town
in Hannibal, Missouri.
Tom Sawyer is a boy who lives with his Aunt Polly, together with his half-brother Sid,
cousin Mary, and Jim the slave. He is told to cover the fence with whitewash for skipping a
day of school. He is then traded his work for some toys and belongings. In Sunday School he
traded these “treasures” for tickets that can be traded in for a Bible. However he embarrasses
himself while trying to show-off his knowledge by stating that the first 2 disciples were David
and Goliath. Tom falls in love with Becky Thatcher and says they should get married. Their
romance was short when Becky found out that Tom used to be engaged with Amy Lawrence.

Tom and Huck decide to go to the graveyard to cure warts. Instead, they find Dr.
Robinson, Injun Joe, and Muff Potter digging the grave of Hoss Williams for medicinal
purposes. Injun Joe, didn’t only plan to dig the grave, but he murdered Dr. Robinson. Tom
and Huck swore to each other not to tell anyone. Muff Potter was wrongly accused for the
murder and is incarcerated. This builds up guilt in Tom

Tom, along with Huck and Joe, go to Jackson’s Island to become pirates. The
community starts looking for them. Tom then plans to appear on his funeral. They all return
and the people rejoiced.

Muff Potter’s trial begins and Tom says what happened and that Injun Joe is the killer.
Muff Potter is no longer accused but Injun Joe flees by jumping out the court window.

Tom and Huck decided to go treasure hunting in a Haunted House. They reach the
upstairs and hear voices below. They identified those below them as Injun Joe and a
Companion. Injun Joe and his accomplice found a box of gold together with the tools of Tom
and Huck. He took the gold instead of reburying it.

After that, Huck began following Injun Joe so he can steal the gold. Tom had other
plans, and had a picnic in the McDougal’s Cave with Becky and his classmates. Huck
overhears the plan of Injun Joe to harm Widow Douglas. Huck runs and asks for help from a
Welshman and stops the violence. In the cave, Tom and Becky got lost and were not noticed
until the next day. Searcher try to look for them but they can’t find the 2 kids. As Tom and
Becky were running out of resources and falling weak, they find out that Injun Joe is using
the cave as a Hideout. Tom was able to find a way out, and the town celebrates. Judge
Thatcher closed the cave for good, also trapping Injun Joe and results in him starving to
death. Tom and Huck find the gold which is invested for them and The Widow Douglas
adopts Huck.
We can always learn from the mistakes of others. From this book I learned to always
help someone when they are in dire need of your help. We should do this without hesitation,
unlike Tom who had his guilt consume him for days.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is quite an amazing novel. Although it was written for
children when it was published, I doubt that in this modern age, it may not be appropriate to
most. It has killings and shows evidence of slavery. These are what I like about the book, it
shows or makes you feel like you are in those times. I would suggest this book to those who
already developed their reading skills and vocabulary, but to those younger readers, I would
not.
When I read this book, there was something more than just the story I was wondering
about. It opened my mind to how the 19th century was like for the lower class and the slaves.
In no way was I disturbed by the book, but surprised by the lives the characters led during
this time. The kids were imaginative, adventurous, and sometimes are delinquents. Seeing
this today is no longer a common sight, that is why I was surprised of these kids were like.

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