Wednesday, March 4, 2020

"The Princess Bride" by William Goldman (again)

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned here before that I teach literature and creative writing to some of my homeschooled nieces and nephews for high school.  I teach them over the internet because they live so far away, and I love it.  I'm working on converting our studies together into a format I could share with other parents too, so watch the "Lit and Writing Resources for Homeschoolers" page here on this blog for that to show up this spring.

Anyway!  This year, I'm teaching a nephew who is in tenth grade.  He's good friends with my son, who is in sixth grade, but who reads like a high-schooler as long as the subject matter isn't too intense for him.  So my son has been doing the same lit course with my nephew, which lets them discuss books together instead of it just being me and the nephew, and gives them stuff to talk about when they're together once a year too.  (We started this last year when my nephew asked to read The Lord of the Rings for lit, and my son had been begging to read that too, and they asked if they could read it together, and I said yes, and they had so much fun doing so that they wanted to continue studying together.)

This month, we spent two weeks reading and discussing The Princess Bride by William Goldman.  And my mommy-heart is SO full and happy because my son LOVED IT!  I think he read it four full times in two weeks.  He goes around quoting it now.  He'd seen the movie before -- my brother and I actually took him to see it on the big screen a couple of years ago, one of those TCM + Fathom Events showings.  But he was about 10 when he saw the movie and didn't really get the wonderfulness.  Now he gets it :-D

I don't always reread the books that we're studying together, especially if I've read them within the last few years.  But I hadn't read this since 2013, so I decided I was due for a reread.  And I loved it all over again.  The witty dialog, the sarcasm, the send-up of so many fairy tale and adventure story tropes, the wonderful characters, the delicious authorial asides... it's just a delight for beginning to end.  

(I suppose I should mention that this is a humorous fantasy story about a beautiful girl and a handsome boy who fall in love, are parted by pirates and princes, find each other again, lose each other again, and everything turns out pretty happily in the end.)

If This was a Movie, I Would Rate It:  PG-13 for violence, torture, and some bad language.  Also a little extremely veiled suggestive material.  But yes, I let my 12-yr-old read it anyway.


  1. I need to read this one! The movie is amazing!

    1. Skye, YES! It is sooooooooo funny and witty and sly and intelligent. Read it! It's like the movie, only more so.

  2. It's been awhile since I read this, but it was so good! That's awesome that your son loved it, too!


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