11) The Little Prince

By: Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Date Finished: 09.03.13

by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

“When a mystery is too overpowering, one dare not disobey.”

“In one of the stars I shall be living.  In one of them I shall be laughing.  And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing, when you look at the sky at night… You — only you — will have stars
that can laugh.”

Regrettably, I do not remember enough French to have read this in its original language.  But even in English it was a lovely book.  It’s an odd little story of a boy’s travels across several small asteroids ultimately landing him on Earth.  Just as the Little Prince is preparing to return to his home, he encounters our unnamed narrator — a young man who had grown up more than he intended.  The narrator had been a very imaginative child, but gave up on his artistic pursuits after discouraging reactions from the grown-ups.  Meeting the Little Prince reawakens his creative spirit so that he can determine what’s truly a matter of great importance.

There are a number of nonsensical elements, as one might expect in a children’s book, that fill the pages with charm and magic.  The imagery is marvelous, especially with illustrations worked into the plot.  It’s a quick read and an enchanting journey to follow.  Scenes flow seamlessly and while I do think a bit of the magic fell through the cracks of translation, the style really is superb.  There’s not much else to say without giving away plot, except to agree that it certainly deserves its place among enduring literature.  And if you want a spoiler-free taste of the story, I think the dedication will tell you all you need to know:

The Little Prince dedication

At the end of the day: For me

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