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Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure [Mass Market Paperback]

William Goldman
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (472 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 8.95 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Kindle Edition CDN $5.82  
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Book Description

Oct. 1 2007

William Goldman's modern fantasy classic is a simple, exceptional story about quests—for riches, revenge, power, and, of course, true love—that's thrilling and timeless.


Anyone who lived through the 1980s may find it impossible—inconceivable, even—to equate The Princess Bride with anything other than the sweet, celluloid romance of Westley and Buttercup, but the film is only a fraction of the ingenious storytelling you'll find in these pages. Rich in character and satire, the novel is set in 1941 and framed cleverly as an “abridged” retelling of a centuries-old tale set in the fabled country of Florin that's home to “Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passions.”

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The Princess Bride is a true fantasy classic. William Goldman describes it as a "good parts version" of "S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure." Morgenstern's original was filled with details of Florinese history, court etiquette, and Mrs. Morgenstern's mostly complimentary views of the text. Much admired by academics, the "Classic Tale" nonetheless obscured what Mr. Goldman feels is a story that has everything: "Fencing. Fighting. Torture. Poison. True love. Hate. Revenge. Giants. Hunters. Bad men. Good men. Beautifulest ladies. Snakes. Spiders. Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passion. Miracles."

Goldman frames the fairy tale with an "autobiographical" story: his father, who came from Florin, abridged the book as he read it to his son. Now, Goldman is publishing an abridged version, interspersed with comments on the parts he cut out.

Is The Princess Bride a critique of classics like Ivanhoe and The Three Musketeers, that smother a ripping yarn under elaborate prose? A wry look at the differences between fairy tales and real life? Simply a funny, frenetic adventure? No matter how you read it, you'll put it on your "keeper" shelf. --Nona Vero --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


PRAISE FOR THE PRINCESS BRIDE "[Goldman's] swashbuckling fable is nutball funny . . . A 'classic' medieval melodrama that sounds like all the Saturday serials you ever saw feverishly reworked by the Marx Brothers." --Newsweek
"One of the funniest, most original, and deeply moving novels I have read in a long time." --Los Angeles Times

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent... some people are so stupid. Dec 22 2003
This is an excellent book, as long as you don't go into it wanting a conventional fantasy novel. At some points during the reading, you will realize that Goldman did not write the book intending for it to be a pure fantasy, but perhaps more of a satire of reality. His entire point in writing it was to show readers that they are in the real world. The characters and happenings are so far fetched because Goldman wants us to realize that life isn't a fantasy.
If you've seen the movie, read the book to get more out of the story. If you haven't seen the movie, read the book and then see it. If you've already read the book, why are you looking at reader reviews?--I mean--buy the movie.
Oh yeah... there are plenty of reviews here saying that this book is so horrible because Goldman cut hundreds of pages out of S. Morgenstern's original Princess Bride. Do not pay any attention to these reviews... these people have been misinformed. S. Morgenstern was a fictional writer invented by Goldman. He is just a character in Goldman's story. This story is not abridged, as it may seem(The 'Good Parts' Version). It is just a tale that Goldman made up, or maybe his father made it up, or maybe his father's father... the point is, the tale was never WRITTEN anywhere else until Goldman came along, so you are not missing anything in reading THIS version. Please do not go and try to find S. Morgenstern's original... that would be an impossibility, as well as a waste of time.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No age limit required Aug. 2 2008
The Princess Bride was released in '74, way back when I was 14 years old. My father tossed it to me after he had finished it and told me I would like it. I liked it so much I was one of the many (suckers) who sent away for the reunion scene between Westley and Buttercup that Goldman offered on page 153 of the paperback. Heck, I was 14, I wanted more of the story, and if all it was going to cost me was a stamp....
I'm 48 years old now, and I still read this book every once in a while; it never gets old. Sometimes I find myself skipping ahead a little, then I remember Fezziks logic "fool, fool, back to the beginning is the rule."
No matter the genre of books you prefer, be it horror, mystery, sci-fi, and no matter your age, you must, MUST read this book. It has been in my top 10 since I was 14. My 8 year old son wants to read it which I think is fantastic, because he'll have 6 years on my first reading it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just another pulp novel (spoilers!) June 23 2004
By nsim
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A witty and elegant subversion of the fantasy genre.
It astonishes me that some of the reviewers below never figured out that the book of which this one purports to be an abridgment /doesn't exist./ There never was an S Morgenstern, nor were there kingdoms of Florin and Guilder (the names of medieval coins, not countries.)
/The Princess Bride/ is a novel about the relationship between a sick boy and his grandfather. The grandfather emigrated to America as an adult. During the boy's confinement, the grandfather reads him their fictitious ancestral country's national novel, cutting and reworking as he goes to transform it into a straightforward adventure story the boy will enjoy. The problem of teaching a child born in America to identify with his national heritage is a difficult one; after all, people from the old country smell funny, eat weird things, talk with accents, and don't know anything about baseball. I imagine that Goldman himself comes from an immigrant family. In that light, this book is in part his response as an adult to his memories growing up, and it is warm and engaging.
But Goldman manages not to let this turn into treacle by combining it with an adventure story so good that they made a movie out of it. The scenes with Fred Savage in the movie are not extraneous, they're vital to the book's unique quality: naive self-consciousness. It's a book that's basically about someone reading a book (take that, postmodernism,) but it uses the metatextual conceit to add to the story by giving it a deeper social significance rather than to detract from it by making it the object of games with meaning.
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Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I borrowed this book for a road-trip from central Alberta to the Redwoods in southern Orgeon. I developed terrible strep-throat, and my beau read me this book every single night around the campfire. Due to the meds I was on, I kept falling into an anti-biotic induced stupor, and would frequently fall asleep, only to temporarily regain consciousness for minutes at a time. My beau simple read where I left off, making this experience similar to Goldman's childhood experience.

Seems this is the very best story to read a sickly child, or a rambling nomad. Like Buttercup, my journey to find true-love has been fraught with heartache, torment, and sabotage.

This book will follow us on our adventures, and will be passed on to our children... they will hear how their Dad read this book every night to their sickly mother, and how this book secured our bonds of true love.
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My Thoughts:

1. I loved the movie as a kid and reading the book brings back so much nostalgia and childhood memories :)

2. Goldman's writing style makes this such an entertaining read. I like how he added his input and thoughts in between scenes which does well in connecting the readers to the author. There were multiple times where Goldman had me wondering if everything he wrote was fictional which required some googling to confirm. He totally had me fooled in some parts.

3. It's killing me to know that I can't read the reunion scene and yet Goldman keeps teasing about it in the book. Gahh...

4. I LOVE LOVE LOVE all the characters! Especially Fezzik, he's such a sweet and gentle giant :D One of my favourite scenes had to be Buttercup's confession, oh man that had my LOLing so hard.

5. An epilogue titled "Buttercup's Baby" was included in my edition of the book. To be honest, it wasn't the best epilogue written (I just skimmed through it) but it was nice to see a little more into their futures.

6. The book was exactly as I remember the movie to be. There were some scenes in the book I wished they could have adapted into the movie.
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Didn't recieve what is shown in Amazon picture.
Did a ton of research and looked around to figure out the different editions of The Princess Bride and their varying costs. Finally found this one on Amazon. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Sam Watts
5.0 out of 5 stars great
I love this movie and heard the book was even better. i love the book! It came in great condition
Published 4 months ago by rlshortridge
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!!
Enjoyed the movie, but the book was just as great.
Lots of details.
My daughter can't stop repeating the lines to us.
Published 4 months ago by Sylvie Beveridge
4.0 out of 5 stars No Time to review must get on with book
No Time to review must get on with book
I don't want to do this let me read please let me
Published 6 months ago by teeny
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story!
I love the movie and I loved this abridged version of Morgenstern's book. Mr. Goldman makes it a fun read and I'd recommend it to anyone that enjoys a good old-fashioned story. Read more
Published 7 months ago by MT
5.0 out of 5 stars An all-time favorite
I put off reading this book for a long time. The reason is because this is one of my all time favorite movies, and you know that most times the movie isn't like the book. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Rose
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
great book, great quality, it was fun to re-read this story of true love and high adventure! and so funny along the way :)
Published 12 months ago by Nicole Lau
5.0 out of 5 stars Even more quirky than the movie!
I had already seen the movie before I read the book. In order to fully appreciate the movie, you've got to read this quirky, comical, and unique book. Read more
Published 19 months ago by AGW
5.0 out of 5 stars Romance
This was a well written book that has so many layers of meaning, but the plot is good just as a light read as well.
Published on Dec 27 2010 by Tina Townsend
4.0 out of 5 stars great once you know the truth
i loved this book. i saw the movie in school, and got the book a few years ago for christmas. I put of reading it for a while, cause the abrigment description parts started to bug... Read more
Published on Oct. 16 2006 by bibliophile girl
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