Adventures of Tom Sawyer: An Analysis of Tom and Huck’s Characters

Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is a beloved classic for many reasons. It tells the simple story of two young boys growing up in small-town America, getting into all sorts of mischievous adventures along the way. But beneath its surface, the book is also a commentary on race, class, and religion in America.

One of the most interesting aspects of the book is its portrayal of the two main characters, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Though they are best friends, the boys could not be more different in terms of their backgrounds, personality, and values. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at these two characters and what makes them so unique.

Tom Sawyer – The Prototypical American Boy

Tom Sawyer is the epitome of the all-American boy. He’s clever, mischievous, and full of energy. He doesn’t necessarily follow rules or respect authority, but he’s ultimately a good kid at heart. Throughout the novel, Twain paints a picture of Tom as a dreamer; he’s always coming up with new schemes and adventures, even if they don’t always turn out as planned. Perhaps this is why Tom is such a likable character; he embodies the spirit of childhood imagination.

Huck Finn – A Rebel Without a Cause

Huck Finn is Tom’s best friend and foil. While Tom comes from a respectable family and attends school regularly, Huck lives on the margins of society. He’s an orphan who doesn’t go to school, and as a result, he can barely read or write. Huck Finn is also much less idealistic than Tom; he’s more skeptical and pragmatic. This becomes evident early on in the novel when Huck fakes his own death in order to escape his abusive father. For Huck, life is about survival rather than adventure; he doesn’t have time for daydreaming like Tom does.


Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is one of those rare novels that can be enjoyed by both children and adults alike. Part of what makes it so special is its complex portrait of human nature, particularly as seen through the eyes of its two main characters, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Though they come from different backgrounds and have different worldviews, the boys are united by their bond as friends. And it is through their friendship that we are able to see both the best and worst aspects of humanity on display.