Thursday, May 16, 2013

A Classic book not to be missed

There is no mistaking a real book when one meets it.  It is like falling in love.               
                                   - Christopher Morley  (1890-1957)

Title: The Little Prince 70th Anniversary Edition Gift Set with CD
Author and Illustrator: Antoine De Saint-Exupery (1900-1944)
Narrator of CD: Viggo Mortensen

The original book was published in 1943 and was in its original language of French. It can boast that it is the most read, most translated book in the French language and was voted the best book of the 20th century in France.  It has been translated into 250 languages and dialects including braille.  It has sold over one million copies per year and has sales of more than 140 million copies worldwide.  It has become one of the best selling books ever published....a true classic in every sense of the word!

This simple, charming story is about a little prince who comes down to earth from Asteroid B-612.  Although he is a prince, his planet is small and he is friendless and lonely.  A pilot has crash-landed his plane in the Sahara Desert and out of nowhere hears a voice calling to him to draw him a picture of sheep.  The voice belongs to the little prince, dressed in a strange garb, and the two meet up and become fast friends.  The prince then reveals his life to the pilot: where he came from, why he is on earth, why he is confused and is seeking answers to his many questions of life.  This simple tale explains that we were all once children in search of fulfilling our dreams and aspirations and are trying to seek out the truth. The little prince reminds us of the irrationality and uselessness of the adult world.  He learns that sometimes only when those we love are gone, only then do we learn to cherish and value their importance.  The book ends by the little Prince returning to his planet leaving his new found friend but encouraging him to look into the stars where the little Prince will home, tending his beloved friend, his rose.  This classic tale is timeless and appeals to all age groups.  The special deluxe gift set is perfect for you to re-connect with this inspiring book or as a tool to introduce this classic to a whole new generation of readers.  It is one of those books that you should make an effort to read at least once in your lifetime due to its expansive popularity and longevity.   The CD is a wonderful added bonus that would be perfect to slip into your car CD player and enjoy on a road trip this summer.

About the Author:

Date of Birth
29 June 1900Lyon, France 

Date of Death
31 July 1944, off the coast of Marseille, France (plane crash) 

Birth Name
Antoine-Marie-Roger De Saint-Exupery 

6' 2" (1.88 m) 

Mini Biography
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was born into an old family of provincial nobility. After failing his final exams at a preparatory school, he entered the École des Beaux-Arts to study architecture. In 1921, he began his military service in the 2nd Regiment of Chasseurs, and was sent to Strasbourg for training as a pilot. The next year, he obtained his license, and was offered a transfer to the air force. But his fiancée's family objected, so he settled in Paris and took an office job. His engagement ultimately broke off, however, and he worked at several jobs over the next few years without success.

By 1926, he was flying again. He became one of the pioneers of international postal flight in the days when aircrafts had few instruments and pilots flew by the seat of their pants. He worked on the Aéropostale between Toulouse and Dakar. His first tale L'Aviateur (The Aviator) was published in the magazine Le Navire d'argent. In 1928, he published his first book Courrier-Sud (Southern Mail), and flew the Casablanca/Dakar route. He became the director of Cap Juby airfield in Rio de Oro, Sahara. In 1929, he moved to South America where he was appointed director of the Aeroposta Argentina Company. In 1931, Vol de Nuit (Night Flight), which won the Prix Femina, was published. He kept writing and flying until the beginning of the war. He married Consuelo Suncin Sandoval de Gómez, a widowed Salvadoran artist and writer who was the model for the temperamental Rose in Le Petit Prince. Theirs was a stormy union as Saint-Exupéry traveled frequently and indulged in numerous affairs.

During World War II, he escaped to New York City, but came back to fight with the Allies in a squadron based in the Mediterranean. Now aged 44, he was about to quit but agreed to one last mission: to collect data on German troop movements in the Rhone River Valley. He took off the night of July 31, 1944, and was never seen again. A lady reported having seen a plane crash around noon of August 1 near the Bay of Carqueiranne. A body wearing a French uniform was found several days later and was buried in Carqueiranne that September. In 1998, a fisherman found a silver chain bracelet south of Marseille. At first it was thought a hoax, but it was identified later as Saint-Exupéry's. On April 7, 2004, officials confirmed that the twisted wreckage of a Lockheed Lightning P-38, found on the seabed off the coast of Marseille in 2000, was Saint-Exupéry's. The discovery is akin to solving the mystery of where Amelia Earhart's plane went down in the Pacific Ocean in 1937. However, the cause of the crash remains a mystery.

Fun for you....

                                               Book Review Rating:   9  (Close to Perfection!)

Read on and read always!

Continué de lire et lisent toujours   (French)

Review copy compliments of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company... merci, thank you.
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