The Man that Corrupted Hadleyburg by Mark TwainThe Man that Corrupted Hadleyburg by Mark Twain

The Man that Corrupted Hadleyburg

byMark Twain

Paperback | October 1, 2007

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"Why, you simple creatures, the weakest of all weak things is a virtue which has not been tested in the fire."

Written on hotel stationary while in Europe on the run from American creditors, soon after the death of a daughter, The Man That Corrupted Handleyburg is often cited as a work of bitter cynicism—a statement on America, to some, on the Dreyfus Case, to others—created by a weary author at the end of his career.

Another appreciation, however, is that it is, simply, Mark Twain at his best. The story of a mysterious stranger who orchestrates a fraud embarrassing the hypocritical citizens of "incorruptible" Hadleyburg. The novella is an exceptionally crafted work intertwining a devious and suspenseful plot with some of the wittiest dialogue Twain ever wrote. And like the most masterful literature, it subverts any notion of easy conclusion: is Hadleyburg ruined, or liberated? Is the mysterious stranger Satan, or a hero? Is this a book of revenge, or redemption? One thing is clear: This brilliant novella is a complex and compassionate consideration of the human character by a master at the height of his form.

The Art of The Novella Series

Too short to be a novel, too long to be a short story, the novella is generally unrecognized by academics and publishers. Nonetheless, it is a form beloved and practiced by literature's greatest writers. In the Art Of The Novella series, Melville House celebrates this renegade art form and its practitioners with titles that are, in many instances, presented in book form for the first time.
Mark Twain was born Samuel Clemens in 1835 in Florida, Missouri, and raised in nearby Hannibal. After apprenticing as a printer, he left home at 18 to travel the world. He returned to captain a Mississippi riverboat for four years, then headed west on a stage coach, filing absurdist travel stories for newspapers along the way—using ...
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Title:The Man that Corrupted HadleyburgFormat:PaperbackDimensions:128 pages, 7 × 5.02 × 0.3 inPublished:October 1, 2007Publisher:Melville HouseLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0976140799

ISBN - 13:9780976140795

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Editorial Reviews

"I wanted them all, even those I'd already read." —Ron Rosenbaum, The New York Observer "Small wonders." —Time Out London "[F]irst-rate…astutely selected and attractively packaged…indisputably great works." —Adam Begley, The New York Observer "I’ve always been haunted by Bartleby, the proto-slacker. But it’s the handsomely minimalist cover of the Melville House edition that gets me here, one of many in the small publisher’s fine 'Art of the Novella' series." —The New Yorker "The Art of the Novella series is sort of an anti-Kindle. What these singular, distinctive titles celebrate is book-ness. They're slim enough to be portable but showy enough to be conspicuously consumed—tiny little objects that demand to be loved for the commodities they are." —KQED (NPR San Francisco) "Some like it short, and if you're one of them, Melville House, an independent publisher based in Brooklyn, has a line of books for you... elegant-looking paperback editions ...a good read in a small package." —The Wall Street Journal