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A Book Review

The Little Prince was authored by Antoine De Saint-Exupery (1900-1943), a French nobleman, in 1943.

De Saint-Exupery was an aviator and the author of several bestselling novels, but the Little Prince far exceeded his wildest dreams.

It was translated into 200 languages [1] and sold more than 85 million copies. At least four movies have been made from his book. It continues to sell, even today and a new 3D animation movie was released in 2015.[2]

Who should read this book:

  • Those that tire of the words of adults and hunger for the innocent honesty of children’s words in all their briefness.
  • Those that desire to read about a deep sincere love of a young prince for his fragile and coquettish rose.
  • Those that thirst for uncomplicated adventure in its simplest form.
  • Last and most important of all, those that are able to see a story through the mind of a child.

An old and very wise saying tells us that unless we can see and accept as a child does, we have no opportunity for an eternal life[3]

I am not very sure of why this story appealed to millions of people around the globe.  But clearly it did and it still does. My personal opinion is that, as it is written, it is not a story for children. However, the story was written from a child’s view of adults, by an adult. Now, if this makes sense to you – you are qualified to read the book.

More than this, from what information I have gathered; ‘the plot thickens’. Was the author really telling the story about a fictitious child-like character, or was he writing about himself, concerning someone whom he loved….and cherished?

I will explain what I mean by this statement, in my next post, Saturday April 29, 2017.

Until then, let’s get back to the book.

To begin with, there are two major players on this stage:

Firstly there is the Little Prince, who is, at the very least, an absolutely fascinating character. He lives on (his own) planet, which is an asteroid named ‘B-612.’ His sole company are three volcanos’ (two active and one extinct) and a little coquettish rose that has four thorns which she believes makes her invincible to any would-be enemies.

In terms of his stature, dress and worldly knowledge, The Little Prince could easily be described as ‘childlike’. However, given the level of his spiritual understanding and wisdom, it becomes obvious that he is not a child, but rather a pure ‘spiritual being’.

The second is an aviator, whose airplane has crashed in the Sahara desert. As better understood by fellow aviators, he is a rare mix between pilot and engineer (very uncommon). Because of this mix, he is trying to repair his airplane and fly to safety, before he dies of thirst.

These two characters meet in the Sahara desert. The Little Prince is on the last leg of his voyage of discovery and the aviator on a routine flight (if, in the life of a mail pilot, there was anything routine).

The story begins with the storyteller, a child of six years old at that stage, being disillusioned by the comments of adults, about his first artistic drawings:  a Boa Constrictor from the outside, which adults see as a hat and a Boa Constrictor, on the inside, digesting an elephant!

The storyteller, totally discouraged by the inability of adults to recognize his artistic genius turns to aviation as his next option and at the age of twelve years old, embarks on his first flight in an airplane.

All the while, the Little Prince, at the same time as conducting his daily routine of cleaning his active volcanoes, watering and feeding his little rose; watching  44 sunsets in one  day and  generally maintaining his planet, makes a decision to go on a journey to further his knowledge.

He is moved to do this because he is finding his relationship with his little rose, strained and he does not know how to counter this.

His journey begins by visiting five other asteroids, where he discovers five very unusual, if not quite silly adults, who are, each one, solely in charge of their planet.

There is a lesson to be learned here, by children and others also, about how daft adults can sometimes be.

Ultimately, his journey leads him to planet Earth.

The connecting of The Little Prince and the storyteller occurs when he approaches a startled aviator, trying to repair his airplane in the desert and the Little Prince’s equally surprising question, not of, “Who are you”? or “What are you doing here”?  But rather, “Can you draw me a sheep”?

I shall take the story no further than this. Now, you must read it for yourself. After all, this little book will take you no longer than about 90 minutes to travel, in comfort and wonder, from cover to cover.

Next week I shall post an article on the life and circumstance of the author, at the time of writing this very different book and offer you a ‘behind the scenes viewpoint’ of why I think this story was written by him.

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buy3[1] http://amzn.to/2p1Wmbc

[1] Biography.com

[2] Biography.com

[3] The Bible – Matthew chapter 18 verse 4.