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If any writer ever knew how to tell a story, it was Mark Twain. This series of essays, which combine humor with beautiful language, is more than a great read: it gives insight into the mind of a great man. The book begins with Mark Twain's famous disclaimer "I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told, for I have been almost daily in the company of the most expert story-tellers for many years." Twain then uses the four stories to illustrate his points about story telling. For example, his premise is that a humorous story does not have a purposes, it can go on and on as long as it is funny. The Wounded Soldier story demonstrates this point. He explains how to delivery a story with pauses and noises using The Golden Arm story to illustrate. These stories are a good introduction to Twain's story telling style. The tale of The Golden Arm is a classic, and is a great tale for sleep overs and camping trips.
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