Huckleberry Finn – The “Un-sivilized” Boy
Jim – The Wanted Escapee
Tom Sawyer – The Mischievous Friend
THE COZY VERSION
Huckleberry Finn lives with the Widow Douglas and Miss Watson, wealthy sisters who try to “sivilize” him. One day, Huck’s ne’er-do-well father, Pap, stumbles back into town and demands the gold that Huck and his friend Tom Sawyer discovered. When Huck refuses to hand it over, his father snatches him up and locks him in a cabin across the river. Scared for his life, Huck escapes and runs away.
On Jackson’s Island, Huck meets Jim, one of Miss Watson’s slaves. Jim has also run away, fearing he’ll be sent to another household where he’ll be treated badly and separated from his family. When a raft washes up after a storm, Huck and Jim decide to head downriver in hopes of reaching the free states, even though Huck isn’t sure that helping a runaway slave is the right thing to do.
After recognizing Jim’s kindness and friendship, Huck decides that helping Jim squares with his conscience, even if it doesn’t square with society. However, after many adventures on the raft, Jim is captured and locked up, and Huck goes along with his pal Tom’s wild plans to help Jim escape. In the end, Tom reveals that Miss Watson has died and that Jim has been a free man all along!
Cozy Classics uses a simple one word/one image format to help babies and toddlers build vocabulary and learn everyday concepts such as body parts, emotions, animals, relationships, actions, and opposites. However, Cozy Classics organizes everyday words in a more unique way: through story. By putting words in the context of a story, our books help children find further meaning through a growing sense of narrative.
As children get older, parents can expand on the stories in ever more elaborate ways. If you need a little help, just use the brief synopsis on the back of each book or the longer synopses (the Cozy version) above. But there’s no right or wrong way to read Cozy Classics. Use the words and images as prompts to invent stories of your own and encourage your children to do the same.
Parents can enliven their storytelling with quotations from the originals. Below are some of our favorites from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn that go well with “the Cozy version.” Quotations can lead to whole passages until one day children are enthralled by the richest versions of all: the classics themselves.
Quotations from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
- It was kind of lazy and jolly, laying off comfortable all day, smoking and fishing, and no books nor study. Two months or more run along, and my clothes got to be all rags and dirt…
- “Looky here—mind how you talk to me; I’m a-standing about all I can stand now—so don’t gimme no sass.”
- I thought it all over, and I reckoned I would walk off with the gun and some lines, and take to the woods when I run away.
- Pretty soon he gapped and stretched himself and hove off the blanket, and it was Miss Watson’s Jim! I bet I was glad to see him.
- So in two seconds away we went a-sliding down the river, and it did seem so good to be free again and all by ourselves on the big river, and nobody to bother us.
- We catched fish and talked, and we took a swim now and then to keep off sleepiness. It was kind of solemn, drifting down the big, still river, laying on our backs looking up at the stars, and we didn’t ever feel like talking loud, and it warn’t often that we laughed—only a little kind of a low chuckle.
- …then I happened to look around and see that paper… I took it up, and held it in my hand. I was a-trembling, because I’d got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself.
“All right, then, I’ll go to hell”—and tore it up.
- And there’s Jim chained by one leg, with a ten-foot chain, to the leg of his bed.
- So I started for town in the wagon, and when I was half-way I see a wagon coming, and sure enough it was Tom Sawyer, and I stopped and waited till he come along.
- “Now you work your mind, and study out a plan to steal Jim, and I will study out one, too; and we’ll take the one we like the best.”
- “Who’s that? Answer, or I’ll shoot!”
But we didn’t answer; we just unfurled our heels and shoved. Then there was a rush, and a Bang, Bang, Bang! and the bullets fairly whizzed around us!
- “Now, old Jim, you’re a free man again, and I bet you won’t ever be a slave no more.”