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It's a classic but, um, boring

August 22, 2006|by OLIVIA MONTG0MERY

Review

Sixty-three years later and the little boy remains a prince.

What's your favorite genre? Is it sci-fi? Fantasy? "The Little Prince" is an interesting combination of both genres.

The book, by Antoine de Saint-Exupery (who died a year after writing this book), is perfect for a quick read. It is also a simplistic yet intriguing tale of a little prince who lives on a small planet. He comes to Earth in search of a sheep to protect his beloved rose.

On the way, he meets a variety of adults, each on their own small planet. The prince meets a king who says he rules over the entire universe; a drunk who says he drinks to forget; a vain man who wanted the prince to stay with him so he could have the prince say all the good comments he could think of; a lamplighter whose existence is consumed by lighting and extinguishing one lamp; and finally a businessman who is trying to buy all the stars in the sky after he counts them all.

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Finally, the prince comes to Earth. He meets a pilot who dreamed when he was young of becoming an artist. But his dream was shot down by adults. Thus he was forced to join the mundane life of adults, although he did so reluctantly. Upon meeting the prince, his old desire is reawakened. He becomes closer to the prince he starts to see life in simple terms, like the prince.

According to Amazon.com's assessment of the book, "The Little Prince" appeals to modern readers with its underlying emotion and the innocence of the prince's perspective on life. Teachers like it because of the mature, yet easy-to-understand morals and insight. One popular aphorism is: "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."

I read the book when my editor asked me to, and I found that while most parts of it are good, some of it is just too simplistic for my taste. It is not a book I would read again and again. All in all, I recommend it for something to read on a car or plane trip. It's a quick read.

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