Presented in a first person narration, Roughing It serves as an instrument allowing a momentary escape from modern society and the chance to experience the true nature of the Wild West, with images of mining, gold prospecting, and the grandeur of untouched wilderness. The novel begins with the young narrator travelling to Nevada to assist his brother Orion Clemens, who has been appointed to a government position, and is required to move west. Consequently, the narrator sets out on a stagecoach journey west, while depicting a time absent of modern luxuries and colorfully illustrates the rough course of travel in a frontier territory. Beginning in Missouri, the novel continues on through Salt Lake City, to Nevada, then San Francisco until finally reaching Hawaii. The vagrant and enthusiastic young man frequently jaunts off in search of adventure and excitement which bring about many mishaps. In addition, the narrator meets many diverse characters during his journey including miners, pioneers, Mormons, and Native Americans, of whom none are spared from his satirical depiction and classification. Structured in episodic stories, Twain brilliantly recounts stories from his daily travels with a generous supply of humor, anecdotes, tall tales and imagery.
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