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Summary

Praise for Nick Offerman narrating Mark Twain:

“Offerman’s Illinois-raised voice and actor’s talent suit him ideally to channel Mark Twain.” (The New York Times Book Review)

“There’s something about his wry Midwestern merriment that aspires to Twainishness.” (Men’s Journal)

“It’s a melding of sardonic voices: Mark Twain, meet Nick Offerman.” (The Wall Street Journal)

With his trademark mirth and boundless charisma, actor Nick Offerman brought the loveable shenanigans of Twain's adolescent hero to life in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Now, in yet another virtuosic performance, the actor proves that despite being separated by a span of over a century, his connection to the author and his work is undeniable and that theirs is a timeless collaboration that should not be missed. Trading in the idyllic banks of Twain's Mississippi for medieval England, Offerman regales listeners with one of American literature's foremost satires and the author's most inventive and darkly funny pieces of fiction.

Hank Morgan is the archetype of modern man in 19th-century New England: adept at his trade as a mechanic, innovative, forward thinking. So when a blow to the head inexplicably sends him back in time 1300 years and places him in Camelot, instead of despair, he feels emboldened by the prospect placed before him and sets out to modernize and improve the lives of his fellow citizens. But, in order to do so, he'll need to contend with brash nobles, superstitious nincompoops, and a conniving, blowhard wizard.

While time travel has become a common trope in storytelling today, in Twain's time it was truly a novel idea; all the more imaginative when you consider how it's used for satirical effect. A thinly veiled critique of the political and social institutions that impede progress and a scathing condemnation of the naiveté that allows them to thrive, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court saw Twain's biting wit and sharp tongue honed to a fine point.

Told primarily through Hank's first-person perspective, Offerman effortlessly captures the Yankee's straightforward, matter-of-fact gruffness. Like Offerman - whose woodworking skills are the stuff of legend - Hank is a natural builder of things and his can-do, by-the-bootstraps spirit finds its vocal foil in Offerman's crisp delivery. But it's in Offerman's ability to convey the myriad characters and absurdities Hank faces that makes this an incomparable listening experience: the flowery embellishments and insane braggadocio of knights; the lilting, feathery sing-song of Clarence; the garrulous, long-winded pomp of the aristocracy; the old, dithering windbag pronouncements of Merlin. Offerman plays each of these with a humor and humanity that Twain himself would have enjoyed.

Public Domain (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A fantastic voice and word combination

Mark Twain's words in Nick Offerman's tones make for a top quality audiobook. One of the most enjoyable I have experienced for a while.

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Brilliantly read

Nick Offerman is the perfect voice for Twain. He is a pleasure to listen to. The story itself is a pleasure too. Particularly if you are at all familiar with Thomas Malory's Morte D'Arthur or any of the King Arthur legends.

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Tedious and dispiriting

I thought I knew the story in essence but hadn't realised just how cynical Twain can be. This is not remotely the whimsical romp I had remembered from an old children's version and the Bing Grosby movie, but is rather a vehicle for the author's opinions on politics and especially established religion. He just goes on and on about it. There doesn't seem to be any aspect of the (mythical) Camelot that he likes. Everyone he meets is a fool, deluded by tradition and custom, in thrall to a perverse social system sustained by the Church. Even when you accept much of what he says at face value (the divine right of kings is an easy target), his monomania about it is wearing and there is very little humour to lighten the mood. The whole thing comes across like a pamphlet dressed up as a novel. It's like reading a 19th-century diatribe against cock-fighting.

The reading is extremely good, so the problem is with the material rather than the production.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Philip M. Chute
  • 23-10-17

Mark Twain and Nick Offerman are a perfect match

The narration is perfect for the wit and sarcasm throughout this classic. The book is timeless and still great fun. I hope Nick Offerman reads more of Twain's novels.

40 of 41 people found this review helpful

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  • unix_geek
  • 25-09-17

Nobody is better suited to reading this book

Nick Offerman is the perfect voice for this classic story. Wonderfully done. The best audio book I’ve listened to. The characters were well-performed, clear and distinct, and it was read in a comfortable and familiar way.

18 of 19 people found this review helpful

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  • Josh Carr Superstar
  • 29-09-17

So funny

Such a funny book, Nick Offerman was the perfect choice. Without a doubt he is the boss

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • james galvin
  • 22-11-17

I would give Nick Offerman 10 stars if I could

This book is Timeless. It is hard to believe that Mark Twain wrote this in 1889. It is all about capitalism, fraud, the effect of the church, and the ever present con artist. It may take place with the language and gallantry of the knights of the round table but it could be happening today. That is what makes him such a powerful writer. And to have it delivered by Nick Offerman just makes it MAGIC!

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

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  • numex
  • 02-11-17

Never knew...

...anything about Mark Twain, except Tom and Huck. I laughed and laughed at the tremendous wit of Twain and narration of Mr. Offerman. What a treat.

38 of 42 people found this review helpful

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  • David I. Williams
  • 08-01-18

Excellent Production

It has been over thirty years since I last read Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. The story is just as I remembered, though I had forgotten some details. Of course a 43 year old sees things missed by his 13 year old self. This is a masterpiece by the great American master. How can you make Twain even better? Add Nick Offerman as the reader. Offerman is brilliant. I’m sad I can only give five stars.

21 of 23 people found this review helpful

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  • Mitch Pillarick III
  • 02-10-17

Sir Nick Offerman is the Boss

It wasn’t long into this tale before I began imagining Nick Offerman himself as the main protagonist. In those intentional gaps in character development authors often leave for the reader to determine, such as unspoken mannerisms or physical characteristics, I unconsciously filled in with the mustachioed presence of the narrator. This complemented the work well. If this acting thing does not work out for the noted woodworker turned thespian, then he may just yet have a future in recounting the works of Mr. Twain.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Mark T. Branden
  • 26-10-17

Mark Twain + Nick Offerman = Auditory Mirth

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court is a literary treasure as it stands alone. When combined with Mr. Offerman's scotch-smooth rendition, its value only increases. It is as if Mark Twain used his protagonist's time traveling ability to pen a novel knowing the exact person for it to be read by 125 years later.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 18-10-17

Nick Offerman does it again. Bravo!

Nick Offerman does it again, an amazing performance of a classic. Offerman was born to read Mark Twain. A classic story with by one of the greatest satirist and novelist in American History and read by an amazing actor with excellent pronunciation, pace, and an expert feel for the theatric. Bravo.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • J.Face
  • 16-10-17

Great story withstands the tests of time

Nick Offerman is the obvious and perfect choice for this timeless story. His voice perfectly articulated the character and tone the words from our protagonist. Well worth the purchase. Will listen many more times

3 of 3 people found this review helpful