The Little Prince

157993by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Children’s Lit
5 of 5 stars

I am one of the few (it would seem) who didn’t grow up reading this book. The funny thing is, I remember seeing it at many of my friends’ houses, not with their books, but always in a “coffee table book” context with other large books my 8-year-old self dubbed “boring.” The cartoon cover confused me, but I decided it was a ploy to lure grownups into reading a Boring Book and resolved to ignore it. Yes–I probably spent more time thinking about this book than the average person who read it. And yes, it strikes me now that this kind of thinking sort of allies with the tone of the story.

All that aside, I finally borrowed it from the library, read it in one night, and of course, I loved it! How could you not? A pilot crashes his plane in the desert, and spends his days discussing surprisingly poignant truths with a little prince from another planet. The language was perfect, the tone was perfect, and best of all, everything the little prince learned about Earth was perfect. The satire is completely on point, and since I read the translated English version (alas, I don’t know French), this was especially pleasing. That’s part of how you know it’s telling the truth–these observations haven’t changed for nearly a hundred years. Anyway, it’s a short book, well worth reading, and I’m probably going to buy it so I can revisit it at least once a year.

If you’d like to see more reviews or buy a copy for yourself, The Little Prince is available on Goodreads and on Powell’s store website, here. Powell’s has several locations in Oregon, and is one of the largest independent bookstores in the country. Please consider supporting your local bookstore!

Similar reads:

  • Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie – The quintessential story about not growing up, this makes a fine companion read to The Little Prince with a similar narrative style and equally moving truths about life. It’s so much more than a Disney cartoon. See my review here.
  • Matilda by Roald Dahl – Another story pitting a child’s intellect against grownups, featuring a little girl with a terrible home life who finds solace in books and her elementary school teacher Miss Honey. Also a social commentary on education and parenting, if you don’t get too distracted by the crazy school pranks.
  • The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster – A rambling adventure of wordplay and smart remarks. I didn’t read this until I was older but I remember absolutely loving it.
  • The Sneetches and Other Stories by Dr. Seuss – This just happens to be my favorite Dr. Seuss book. Each story involves learning about racism, envy, materialism, capitalism, stubbornness, and fear, and it’s all worth remembering later in life as well. If you only vaguely remember it as a kid, or never read it, check it out.
  • The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo – Again, a children’s story I didn’t come across until much later, but so cute and so good! The story of a brave mouse fighting evil and injustice for the sake of the Princess Pea is humorous and touching, and has cute pictures to boot, so now you have no excuse not to grab it.

6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. erinkbay
    Sep 26, 2015 @ 21:25:13

    OH GOSH THIS BOOK THIS BOOK!!!! I’m so glad you loved it!!! OMG this book is so… I don’t even have a word! I just love it SO MUCH!!!!

    Liked by 1 person


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