Thursday, August 20, 2015

Throwback Thursday: The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure: The "Good Parts" Version Abridged William Goldman

Author: William Goldman
First published in 1973 by  Harcourt, Brace and Jovanovich
Audiobook narrated by Rob Reiner

What happens when the most beautiful girl in the world marries the handsomest prince of all time and he turns out to be...well...a lot less than the man of her dreams?

As a boy, William Goldman claims, he loved to hear his father read the S. Morgenstern classic, The Princess Bride. But as a grown-up he discovered that the boring parts were left out of good old Dad's recitation, and only the "good parts" reached his ears.

Now Goldman does Dad one better. He's reconstructed the "Good Parts Version" to delight wise kids and wide-eyed grownups everywhere.

What's it about? Fencing. Fighting. True Love. Strong Hate. Harsh Revenge. A Few Giants. Lots of Bad Men. Lots of Good Men. Five or Six Beautiful Women. Beasties Monstrous and Gentle. Some Swell Escapes and Captures. Death, Lies, Truth, Miracles, and a Little Sex.

In short, it's about everything.

I did a "not so" Throwback Thursday review a few weeks back of As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of the Princess Bride.  In that review, I mentioned that I am a HUGE fan of the movie.  But my secret is that I while I have seen the movie too many times to count, I had never read the book.  Now that I have remedied that, I can say that I am even more of a fan.  I thought the book was very entertaining and something that could be read to a child at bed time.  It's a wonderful adventure story filled with fencing, giants, pirates, princesses, etc.  You get the picture.  Actually, I think that Rob Reiner's movie version did an amazing job of capturing the feel of the book.

If you haven't read the book, I suggest you listen to the audio version.  It's narrated by Rob Reiner.  What I loved about his narration is that he reads it like one would read a book to a child.  His attempts at different voices aren't successful, but what dad out there can do a lot of different voices?  It only adds to the charm of the narration.

The thing about this book is that you have to take it all tongue in cheek.  The joke is that there is no real S. Morgenstern.  There is no "unabridged" version of a politically satirical book called The Princess Bride.  William Goldman wrote this story because his daughters asked him to write a book about a princess.  What a wonderful job he did of it too.

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