I love it when I start off a new year by reading a book that becomes a new favourite. That is exactly what happened with The Princess Bride.
Source: Christmas Present (Illustrated edition)
Goodreads Avg. Rating: 4.25
My Rating: 90/100 *****
I have never been much of a movie watcher, so even though the movie of this book is considered a ‘cult classic’ I had never watched, although I have now and I must say, it pales in comparison. So if you like the movie and have never read the book, I strongly suggest you get your hands on a copy.
The book tells the story of William Goldman who buys the book his father used to read to him for his own sons birthday, only to find out his father only read him the good parts, and that the actual book is very long-winded and slightly boring. So, he decides to rewrite it, only including the good parts.
Initially I was really confused. I was expecting this to be a fantasy romance-y adventure, which it is, it does the tell the story of a beautiful village girl who becomes engaged to a Prince and is then kidnapped. But that’s not all it is. It’s a story within a story. Which gave the book heart and history. I wasn’t expecting it. But boy did I love it. It made it a much more unique read.
Throughout the novel the author gives a running commentary about the ‘original S. Morgenstern story’ where he discusses what he’s deleted and sometimes shares a tale of when his father read it to him. You might think that it would get annoying, having the flow of an adventure story interrupted so many times. But I genuinely loved it. As I said, it gave the book heart.
The ‘abridgement’ I found really enjoyable. It has engaging characters, intense fighting scenes, slightly over-the-top proclamations of love. It feels like a fairy tale, like something you’d find in The Brothers Grimm, but more modern and with so much more to it.
If you like the sound of a classic tragic love story, a classic adventure and a heartwarming father and son story, you definitely have to read this book.
Thanks for reading