Who said: "I like a thin book because it will steady a table..."

BookBrowse's Favorite Quotes

"I like a thin book because it will steady a table,
a leather volume because it will strop a razor,
and a heavy book because it can be thrown at a cat."

— Mark Twain


Mark TwainMark Twain was born Samuel Langhorne Clemens on November 30, 1835 in Florida, Missouri. He was apprenticed to a printer at the age of 13 and later worked for his older brother Orion, who established a local newspaper, the Hannibal Journal.

In 1857 he was commissioned to write a series of comic travel letters but gave up after writing five letters to become a steamboat captain instead. He received his pilot's license at the age of 23. He piloted boats for two years until the Civil War brought a temporary halt to steamboat traffic.

After volunteering in the Confederate army for a few months, in 1861 he began working for the 'Territorial Enterprise' in Virginia City. He wrote a humorous travel letter and signed it Mark Twain (mark twain is a boatman's call indicating that the water is only two fathoms deep, which is the minimum for safe navigation); he continued to use this pseudonym for the next 50 years.

In 1864 he took a job as a reporter in San Francisco and wrote the book that first made him famous, The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. From then on he traveled the world writing accounts of his travels for newspapers on both coasts. He died in April 1910.

More Quotes

This quote & biography originally ran in an issue of BookBrowse's membership magazine. Full Membership Features & Benefits.

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Happiness
    Happiness
    by Heather Harpham
    Of the 53 reviews submitted for Happiness, 49 readers rated it a four- or five-star book for an ...
  • Book Jacket
    My Name Is Leon
    by Kit De Waal
    Kit de Waal's striking debut, My Name is Leon, has inspired this big, long, complicated question: ...
  • Book Jacket: New People
    New People
    by Danzy Senna
    Danzy Senna has spent virtually her entire writing career exploring the complicated intersections of...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
News of the World by Paulette Jiles

A brilliant work of historical fiction that explores the boundaries of family, responsibility, honor, and trust.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Heart's Invisible Furies
    by John Boyne

    A sweeping, heartfelt saga set in Ireland from the author of The Boy In the Striped Pajamas.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Resurrection of Joan Ashby

The Resurrection of Joan Ashby by Cherise Wolas

Epic, propulsive, incredibly ambitious, and dazzlingly written--a story about sacrifice and motherhood.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

I's A D Before D

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.