A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain
Received: Purchased (Audiobook)
Publisher: Audible Studios
2 out of 5 stars
In one of the first books to feature time-travel, a mechanic from nineteenth century New England is knocked out during a fight and wakes up in Camelot. He decides that with all of his knowledge of the modern world, he should be able to run the whole country himself in three weeks.
This novel has been called one of the greatest satires in American literature. It has been called hilarious, clever, and a brilliant social commentary. I beg to differ. I found it meandering, incredibly convenient (of course he remembers the one date of a solar eclipse that happens to be a few days from when he flashed back! Why wouldn’t a nineteenth century arms factory mechanic know that date off the top of his head?), and condescending. Whenever Twain would get into the social commentary, it seemed like all he could say was, “What you’re doing is wrong and stupid, and my way is better and smarter. Because it is. Because. It. Is.” and when other characters in the novel would respond with questions or simply not blindly believing this random person who showed up out of nowhere and claimed that their entire way of doing things was wrong, it was obviously because they were idiots.
This book did two things for me.
1: I can now say that I’ve read a book by Mark Twain. Check.
2: If I ever get the opportunity to time travel, I know that I don’t want to meet Mark Twain. (Although, to be fair, that episode of Star Trek The Next Generation did that for me as well.)