reading / the classics club

The Little Prince – Book Review

Blurb from Goodreads – 

Moral allegory and spiritual autobiography, The Little Prince is the most translated book in the French language. With a timeless charm it tells the story of a little boy who leaves the safety of his own tiny planet to travel the universe, learning the vagaries of adult behaviour through a series of extraordinary encounters. His personal odyssey culminates in a voyage to Earth and further adventures.

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I have had this book on my bookshelves for several years. I think I knew the cover well before I knew anything about the book. I picked it up (however many years ago) because I remembered a friend in college who had loved this book and that friend was infinitely cooler than me, so you know…why not?

I read this in one setting (during Sunday night Oscars no less) and it strikes me as being a book that I’ll need to read again. I haven’t quite gotten my thoughts around it yet. Certainly not up to the point where I could even be witty or profound about how this book made me feel.

It reminds me of Peter Pan. Not really in story or character, but more in the non-adult logic of the world. One thing I adore about Peter Pan, is that Neverland (how it’s all four season on the island depending on where you are on the island), and things like the ‘kiss’ at the corner of Mrs. Darling’s mouth, etc.; all those things are fascinating and come out of an imagination that is not hindered by typical logic. I don’t think like that, but kids do. They’ll come up with stories that are so out there and I find that charming. The Little Prince has that same sort of illogical, but logical world. The planets the Prince visits, how flowers talk, how by drawing a sheep our narrator creates that very creature; all of this falls into that bizarre but lovely imagination that occurs in books like Peter Pan and anything by Roald Dahl.

There are so many quotable lines from this book. So many that I’m not sure I could write all the ones that gave me pause. It resonates. Every little phrase. About how taming causes tears.

“I am looking for friends. What does that mean — tame?”

“It is an act too often neglected,” said the fox. “It means to establish ties.”

“To establish ties?”

“Just that,” said the fox. “To me, you are still nothing more than a little boy who is just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you I am nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world….”

How to a vain person, everyone is an admirer. How the only way to see is with the heart. Anything about grownups.

“Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them”

I loved the illustrations. I loved that the fox looked more like an anteater, and how the Prince changes heights throughout. I don’t think I needed the illustrations to understand, but they add so much.

Honestly, I’m not even close to totally ‘getting’ this book. I foresee several rereads in the future.

Rating ***** (five stars)

 

  © ecnewman, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

5 thoughts on “The Little Prince – Book Review

  1. Nice review. I love The Little Prince, so charming and poignant, and quotable. I don’t have my copy handy, so this may not be a perfect quote, but close….you risk tears if you allow yourself to be tamed.

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