The Adventures of Tom Sawyer Book Critique – Myles Fisher Period

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The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain is most definitely centered around the growth and change of its main character, Tom Sawyer. Tom Sawyer, the focal point of the novel, lives in St. Petersburg, Missouri with his half-brother Sid, and his Aunt Polly.

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The general plot proceeds as follows: Tom goes to the graveyard with Huckleberry Finn, the son of a drunken townsman after everyone has gone to sleep, to try a supposed cure for warts. At the graveyard, they encounter the murdering of Dr. Robinson, the morally ambiguous town physician, by the Native-American Injun Joe. Fearfull, Tom and Huckleberry Finn flee and swear not to tell anyone what they saw. Injun Joe blames, Muff Potter, a naive drunk, for the murder and she is wrongfully jailed. Tom’s friend Joe Harper, Huck, and Tom run away to an island and become pirates and they realize the town is searching the river for their bodies. Regretting the decision to run away, the boys fabricate an idea to appear at their funeral and surprise everyone. After the rejoice of the boys returning, Muff Potter’s trial begins. Overcome by guilt, Tom testifies against Injun Joe and Potter gets acquitted, then Injun escapes through the courtroom window. During the summer, Tom and Huck decide to go search for buried treasure in a haunted house and see Injun Joe enter in disguise. Seeing that Injun Joe is in possession of stolen gold, he naturally stalks Injun every night. Meanwhile, during a school trip, Becky (a girl that Tom has had a mad crush on for some time) and Tom get lost in a cave. They run across Injun Joe in the cave and manage to escape secretly while Injun Joe gets locked inside, starving to death.

The main characters in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer are Tom himself, Huckleberry Finn, and Injun Joe. Tom is an imaginative and mischievous boy who constantly finds himself in and out of trouble. He serves as the novel’s protagonist and matures into a leadership role, taking on more and more responsibility as the novel progresses. Huckleberry Finn is the son of a drunk and a social outcast shunned by the community but loved by the boys, who envy his freedom. Huck is, like Tom, very superstitious and mischievous, always ready for an adventure. Huckleberry Finn serves as one of the novel’s supporting characters.

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