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Presented by State Library Victoria

The Little Prince

This month we read The Little Prince, by Antione de Saint-Exupery. It was a good book, though everyone agreed it was a little sad at the end.

We started off by discussing our favourite parts of the book. Some favourite parts were all the bits with the pilot and the prince; everything except

when the prince died; 

;the businessman that counts all the stars; and all the parts where the prince went around visiting the planets. One was different from the rest: I enjoyed how you had to work out what everything meant, it wasn’t black and white. That is very true, as much of the story was metaphorical.

Then we discussed the prince himself. What did you imagine he looked like? Two of our members thought he would look like the little boy on the cover; another thought he would wear a neckerchief, a cardboard crown, and carry a daisy;  and another imagined him wearing loose silk green pyjamas, a gold scarf and a crown. As you can see, everyone imagined him differently.

Another thing we discussed was our favourite picture. Most people liked the elephant inside a  boa constrictor because it showed child creativity, and how adults don’t understand children very well.

We also wondered about the fox, and why he wished for the prince to tame him. We came up with maybe he thought the prince was lonely, and maybe the prince thought the fox was lonely, so at the very least they could share a friendship.

The flower is very vain, so maybe she represents adulthood, or the image that most adults have to carry- of sophistication. The prince might still love her because it’s like a parent loving their child- you just do.

Why did the prince want to go back to the rose? He decided to

die

to go back to the rose, so that shows he learnt to love her more. The reason that he left was the same as the reason he wanted to go back.  He learnt how little time he had in his life and so he realised that he should use that time to appreciate his loved ones. Love is invisible to the eye.  Sometimes your eyes don’t see everything, you need your heart to see what is truly kind and righteous.

Why was the prince so desperate to go home that he got

the snake to bite him?

Maybe the friendship with the pilot wasn’t enough, it didn’t mean as much to him as the friendship with the rose; It can be interpreted as

suicide

, but maybe his home is the heavens; He wasn’t unhappy or anything, he just wanted to go home; He wants to go back to a place where people understand the world like he does and don’t do things like a silly adult. Our answers varied a lot and they are all very accurate. There’s no place like home.

We also wondered if the pilot was like other adults. The pilot tells the little prince’s stories from his point of view, and if he had agreed with the adults, he wouldn’t have made them sound that silly, instead he would have made the little prince sound stupid.

What could the moral of the story be? We thought for the adults it could be a reminder of what life would have been like if they had held onto innocence, their wonder, etc, and for children a warning to hold on to that innocence, wonder, etc.

Finally we rated the book out of 5. These were our ratings: 4 out of 5, 4 out of 5, 5 out of 5, 4.5 out of 5,  4.9 out of 5, because some parts were confusing or boring. The story line is good, but it’s a little vague, and we couldn’t really manage to grasp it, and the similes and metaphors just fit in with it. We recommend it to anyone old enough to be able to interpret the philosophies.

In conclusion, it was an incredibly exciting life seen through a child’s mind. the author used metaphors as a simpler way of showing children different ideas and philosophies. We recommend it to anyone old enough to be able to interpret the philosophies.

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