Mark Twain was undoubtedly a very funny guy. His wit is legendary in literary circles and his writings often poked fun at very serious social issues. But for every funny anecdote he put to paper, there also was a mean-spirited cynical side to the man, especially after losing both his wife and a daughter. His profound grief invaded his writings in the later part of his life. Before his death, Twain requested that some of his more cynical writings not be published for at least 100 years after his death. True to his wishes, the Mark Twain Project has published the first of three volumes of the complete Autobiography of Mark Twain exactly 100 years after his passing in 1910.
If you are expecting a "birth to death" life story of Twain then don't read this book. These are mostly short vignettes and scraps from stories that Twain wrote throughout his life and do not follow any chronology. There are still plenty of light hearted stories that Twain recalls from throughout his life, but I personally find his cynical side more enlightening.
I found one short piece about what Twain said to President Grant the first time he met him to be as classic a Twain story as any I've read. I also enjoyed a story about how a boyhood friend in Hannibal, Missouri fell off the family roof chasing two loud tomcats away. Check catalog for availability.
If you're a fan of Twain's writings this is a must read book.
Submitted by Dan@Central