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Penguin Classics Adventures Of Don Quixote [Mass Market Paperback]

Miguel Cervantes , J Cohen
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan. 1 1950 Classics
The best-known book in Spanish literature, telling the story of the adventurous knight-errant and his squire Sancho Panzo, who set out to right the wrongs of the world.

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From Publishers Weekly

This imposing volume presents the first part of the quest by the beloved Don, whose name stands for chivalry and courage--"The Impossible Dream." The book's heavy stock, binding and design all impart an air of style and prestige, reinforced by Bogin's suave translation, which makes good use of abundant dialogue. (The phraseology and vocabulary, however--"erstwhile," "apothecary," "coherence"--will be beyond younger readers.) Though the paintings by Spanish artist Boix are masterfully executed, some lack the sweep expected from this panoramic work; much of the imagery is somewhat pallid, both in tone and emotional impact. And, though the architectural details, period apparel and scenery are all richly evocative, the characters themselves are often small in scale and dwarfed by their stunning surroundings. Nevertheless, the presence of an elegantly produced, picture book version of this classic merits attention and applause. All ages.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From School Library Journal

Grade 5 Up-- Cervantes's Don Quixote, the moniker and persona adopted by the addled Senor Quijada , who has read a few too many chivalric romances, hardly needs introduction to adults. However, most young people will have hardly heard him mentioned, much less had any firsthand contact with this larger-than-life literary creation. Bogin has taken some of the more involving, outrageous, and well-known adventures of the knight errant and his squire, Sancho Panza, and put them together into a relatively brief narrative that nonetheless is strikingly true to the tone and style of the Spanish original. Her prose, lively and at times employing modern vernacular to good effect, does full justice to Cervantes's mad Knight of the Sad Countenance. It begs reading aloud, and may well start discussion and contemplation. Boix's illustrations are delicate, detailed, gold-washed watercolors that create a kind of fairy-tale ambience. They will grab readers' attention and imaginations and direct anyone picking the book up to delve into it and to find out what's going on. Taken as a whole, this is a lovely job of bookmaking, providing an examplary introduction to a classic work. --Ann Welton, Thomas Academy, Kent,
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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First Sentence
Idle reader, you need no oath of mine to convince you that I wish this book, the child of my brain, were the handsomest, the liveliest, and the wisest that could be conceived. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the best version of Don Quixote I've come across Jan. 23 2004
Format:Paperback
I have a couple versions of Don Quixote, and I've looked at others, and this version, translated by J. M. Cohen, is my personal favorite. From his introduction you find that he has a great love for Spanish literature in general, and this book in particular. His translation of the first sentence alone makes the book; "Idle reader, you can believe without any oath of mine that I would wish this book, as the child of my brain, to be the most beautiful, the liveliest and the cleverest imaginable." Due to the subtlety of languages, every version I've read of this sentence is different, and I don't know much Spanish, nor do I have a Spanish copy to ask a friend to translate it for me, so I couldn't tell you what version is most accurate, but I can tell you that J. M. Cohen's version seems to fit the tone and tempo of the rest of the book.
This version also collects both the first and second Don Quixote novels by Cervantes. I haven't seen any other collection which has this, and I can't find the sequel on it's own.
The book itself is very funny. Unlike the way Don Quixote is often protrayed, Don Quixote doesn't go mad, he simply chooses to see the world differently, to see himself as a knight, to see windmills as giants, to see inn's as castles. His exploits cause him to have quite a bit of painful accidents, but he continues on. Sancho Panza, often described as a "simple fool" I believe may have been mentally retarded, because he genuinely believed the things his master told him, despite all evidence to the contrary. At times, he would make up stories to get out of errands Don Quixote sent him on, and, like a child, would come to believe his own fictions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Where to begin? Feb. 13 2003
By nto62
Format:Hardcover
How do I, a literary amateur, rate a book nearly 400 years old that has been acclaimed by not a few scholarly experts as the greatest novel ever written? I feel a bit like the boy who had the temerity to point out that the emperor was naked, for I have failed to award Don Quixote five stars. Judged by modern-day standards, Cervantes could be accused of sloppiness. He confuses the chronology of his own storyline in several places, though this is as charming as it is perplexing. Seeking to satirically skewer the tales of chivalrous knights-errant popular at the time, Cervantes presents us with Quixote, a loveable madman, and his squire, Sancho Panza, who fluctuates between utter naivete and admirable sagacity throughout. The pair are nothing if not endearing. Sallying forth to right wrongs, assist the down-trodden, and punish the wicked, the two find themselves in a pragmatic and cynical world, astonished and humored by the lunatic idealism of Quixote and the simpleminded fealty of his squire.
Over the course of 5 weeks I read Don Quixote and the experience was varied. At times enthralled, at times merely mildly amused, I looked eagerly forward to resuming the book and, on occasion, half-heartedly attempted to avoid it. To be blunt, there is much in the book that borders on childlike innocence, but there is much as well that strikes a deep chord of love, idealism, perserverence, and grace. On the surface, Don Quixote and Sancho Panza could be regarded as fools. Beneath this foolishness, however, lie the hearts of lions and an unconquerable spirit which provide the ultimate reward to the reader.
The book ends abruptly and badly. After so many adventures through so many pages it was disappointing to behold the manner in which Cervantes opted to close.
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1.0 out of 5 stars hmmm...this aint right... March 15 2011
Format:Hardcover
The book i received was not the one pictured when i made the purchase. Sellers should always inform the buyer of this if it is going to happen. I received an unattractive orange library book with pencil markings in it....
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5.0 out of 5 stars Greatest book ever written Oct. 9 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
If you could have one book on a desert island this would be it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended to anyone who wants to read it July 21 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Did Cervantes write Don Quixote only for those in the early twenty first century with degrees in comparative Spanish literature?
NO!
This book is recommended to anyone interested in literature. This is not to say that it should not be read seriously and with close attention. Not everyone has the time or money to spend on degrees in Spanish literature
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4.0 out of 5 stars The long way around, but a good trip anyway June 21 2003
By Eric W.
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Took longer than I thought it would? Oh, yes. Glad I read it? You bet. There are abridged versions, to be sure, even "kids" versions, but if you're going to do this at all, I say swallow the pill and go for a full translation (1,000+ pages).
Since the main story has been covered further down the list, I'll just touch on a point or two that were pertinent to my experience. There were more than a few digressions from the main story in the first part (I thought they'd NEVER leave the inn the second time). To keep it short, everything that bothered me about Part One bothered Sanson Carrasco, too (that chapter was definitely and interesting way for the author to meet his critics halfway). I'm going to give you the advice you're probably going to get from EVERYBODY: if part one leaves you shaking your head, keep moving, because part two delivers undiluted Knight of the Rueful Figure with very few middlemen.
In the Signet edition, Mr. Starkie also throws in an introductory essay about Cervantes and a decent amount of footnotes to point out the references to genuine chivalric literature...always a good thing.
If your project this summer (this fall, this year, or whenever) is to fill your head with interesting ideas, Don Quixote is a good book to visit.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars A tale of insanity at it's finest.
Don Quixote is a classic piece of literature. If someone could produce a more up to date, vernacular translation, it would rival any comedy made today. Read more
Published on Sept. 28 2003 by sporkdude
4.0 out of 5 stars a one trick pony
this is a pretty funny book about an errant-knight and his many misadventures. only problem is, there's really only one joke in this massive (1000+ page) book, namely, what a fool... Read more
Published on July 19 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Don Quijote, by a spanish author
I read this book in its original language, spanish (since it is my first language too), and I found Don Quijote's adventures fascinating, comical, and sometimes even slightly... Read more
Published on April 18 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent edition of this classic.
Note: Amazon.com seems to have a hard time linking reviews to specific editions - it makes a difference. Read more
Published on Jan. 21 2003 by Daryl Anderson
5.0 out of 5 stars The BEST edition to buy and own
When you approach reading (or rereading) a "classic" work you really, mostly, don't have to think about whether to read it -- that decision was either made by someone assigning it... Read more
Published on Jan. 16 2003 by Daryl Anderson
4.0 out of 5 stars Recommended
Miguel de Cervantes' Don Quixote obviously centers around the title character, Don Quixote. Quixote was originally known as Alonso Quixano, La Manchan noble, who was content with... Read more
Published on Dec 15 2002 by Christina
5.0 out of 5 stars ---
A really funny novel, and really long, but extremely beautiful. The reason it has endured so much is because of the dark humor Cervantes used in it, and maybe it wasn't that funny... Read more
Published on Nov. 12 2002 by Augusto Casanova Guisti
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