The main idea behind this story is just an average little schoolboy getting into loads of trouble all the time and learning things through experience. He's not the role model little boy at all, but he's certainly not the one everyone would pick on and such. Tom Sawyer goes out on all sorts of adventurous adventures, some thought up through imagination and others as serious as a heart attack. Throughout this book you will notice how Tom Sawyer grow up into a more responsible person as it gets further into to the book and nearing the end. He doesn't do the childish things he would've earlier and he does things for other people instead of just for himself. The setting of the story takes place in the city of St. Petersburg, Missouri, and I'm guessing the time of the story is back in the late 1800's.
At the very beginning of the book, Aunt Polly (Tom Sawyer's aunt), is searching for him high and low. I think this is a great way to start off the book because it already shows Tom's "criminal" personality and you can already get the feel of how Tom is. Polly ends up finding Tom eating jam out of the closet which he wasn't supposed to be eating. Before Aunt Polly could mutilate Tom, he was able to divert her attention away from him for just a second, and that was all he needed to escape over the fence.
Tom plays hooky from school and his Aunt has a hunch that he did, so she tries to catch him. Aunt Polly "knows" that Tom played hooky and wanted him to admit it somehow. Aunt Polly thinks she has him for sure when she goes to check if his collar is sewed up, so she has Tom show her the collar. Low and behold, Tom's collar is still sewed up and he slips away. Well, he would've slipped away if Sid hadn't told Aunt Polly the flaw in Tom's sewed collar. Earlier that day Aunt Polly had sewn the collar with white thread, and now it's in black thread. That Tom although tricky, just isn't tricky enough to fool everyone.
Tom, while walking down the street, finds a well-dressed boy and they sort of stare each other down. Finally after all the staring and trash talking the two go into a tussle and Tom comes out victorious. That'll show the dumb kid who's boss.
After the tussle Tom was in he tries to sneak in through his window that night. Sneaky as Tom is, his Aunt Polly was standing right there to catch him in his move. Aunt Polly also saw the state his clothes were in due to the fight he had earlier, so as punishment he spent Saturday working hard labor instead of playing outside with his friends. Chapter 2
Since being caught the night before, Tom had to whitewash a fence (paint at fence white). The day is a beautiful day to play, but Tom is stuck with this chore which made it even worse than it already is.
Tom tries to get Jim, who is a boy in the town, to whitewash the fence while Tom goes and fetches the water that Jim is supposed to be getting. Jim denies because the "Old missis" said that she would expect Tom to be asking Jim to whitewash the fence for him and she said to just go and tend to his own business. This just shows what kind of reputation Tom has around the town.
Tom, that sly dog Tom, starts to get other people to whitewash the fence for him. Not only is he getting them to whitewash the fence, but he's also making profit off of it, if little tidbits of rubbish is what you call making a profit. Once one of the boys were tired another would come along and trade in to be able to whitewash the fence. Whitewashing the fence now wasn't labor for the boys, but more of something fun to do.
A thing that hit me about the profit that Tom made was that a lot of it was just trash, but he made it seem like a treasure. He said he was rolling in wealth and it was things like marbles, a useless key, spool cannon and other sort of useless things. But as creative as Tom Sawyer is, he puts them to use for fun and finds ways to use everything, even a dead...