Despite his reputation as a curmudgeon, Mark Twain didn’t want people reading what he had to say about them because he didn’t want their feelings to get hurt. So, after writing his autobiography, Twain told his publishers to wait 100 years before releasing the book he called “a complete and purposed jumble”.
Robert Hirst, curator of the Mark Twain papers at UC Berkeley, told the CS Monitor that Twain wanted the freedom to write his true thoughts without looking over his shoulder. Apparently he had a lot to say: his autobiography is being released in three volumes, with the first constituting 760 pages.
Don’t look for a traditional, chronological narrative here. Freed of what readers (and publishers) would think, Twain tells his lifestory in a scattered fashion and yet, for all of its randomness, the book paints a vivid and fascinating picture of one of literature’s greats.
Although the official release date isn’t until Nov. 15, Amazon has The Autobiography of Mark Twain, Vol. 1 for sale: