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Book by Mark Twain
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Mark Twain, born Samuel Langhorne Clemens in 1835, published more than thirty literary works, including satire, historical fiction, short stories, and nonfiction. At the age of twelve, Twain left his hometown of Hannibal, Missouri, to seek work. His career encompassed a wide variety of occupations -- printer, Mississippi riverboat pilot, journalist, travel writer, and publisher -- which combined to furnish him with a wide knowledge of humanity and the perfect grasp of local customs and speech manifested in his writing. It wasn't until 1885, with the publication of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, that Twain was recognized by the literary establishment as one of the greatest writers America would ever produce.
Toward the end of his life, plagued by personal tragedy and financial failure, Twain grew more and more cynical and pessimistic. Though his fame continued to widen -- Yale and Oxford awarded him honorary degrees -- he spent his last years in gloom and desperation. But he lives on in American letters as "the Lincoln of our literature."
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