Sunday, May 13, 2012

Top ten pseudonymous books

Josh Lacey is the author of several books for children, including The Island of Thieves, Bearkeeper and the Grk series (published under the name Joshua Doder). His new book, The Dragonsitter, is published in the UK this month.

At the Guardian he named his top ten pseudonymous books. One title on the list:
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

Samuel Langhorne Clemens took his pseudonym from the call of sailors on the Mississippi, shouting out "mark twain", the depth of "two fathoms". I was forced to read the story of Huck Finn at school and hated it. I picked it up again as an adult and fell in love. What could be a better spur to a story than this: "The Widow Douglas she took me for her son, and allowed she would sivilize me; but it was rough living in the house all the time, considering how dismal regular and decent the widow was in all her ways; and so when I couldn't stand it no longer I lit out." All the best children's adventure stories begin in the same way: I was bored at home, tired of domestic life, so I set out to find some excitement...
Read about the other entries on the list.

Huckleberry Finn is among Katie Couric's favorite books, James Gray's six best books, and John Mullan's lists of ten of the best literary men dressed as women, ten of the best vendettas in literature and ten of the best child narrators in literature. It is one of Stephen King's top ten works of literature. Director Spike Jonze and the Where the Wild Things Are film team tagged Huckleberry Finn on their list of the top 10 rascals in literature.

--Marshal Zeringue