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The Happy Prince & Other Stories

4.13  ·  Rating Details ·  9,353 Ratings  ·  491 Reviews
Oscar Wilde is remembered today primarily as a brilliant and witty playwright and the author of the novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. As a result, his shorter pieces of fiction have tended to be neglected, which is a shame for they not only display the same kind of scathing wit, imaginative flourish and engaging narratives as his other work, but present a wider range of s ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published March 2009 by Collector's library (first published 1888)
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K.D. Absolutely
May 08, 2011 K.D. Absolutely rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books
Shelves: 501, childrens
The popular author of The Book Thief, Markus Zusak aptly says in his introduction of this book: "There's something in these fairy tales that reminds me why any of us would want to be readers and writers in the first place, and that is that, the more amazing the stories become, the more I believe them, and the more I realize that I won't forget them." For me, these stories are truly unforgettable!

The Happy Prince : 5 stars (Amazing!)

A formerly rich and only child prince is now a regal statue. The
Oct 16, 2016 ˗ˏˋmaggieˎˊ˗ rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to ˗ˏˋmaggieˎˊ˗ by: Lu Morales
The Happy Prince :

The Nightingale and the Rose :

The Selfish Giant :

The Devoted Friend :

The Remarkable Rocket :

Overall rating: 3
Jan 16, 2016 Srividya rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Srividya by: Fatty Bolger
When you truly live your life, you have to learn to accept and maybe expect the rare and unexpected surprises that might be in store for you. These unanticipated wonders often bring about a lot of joy in our lives and sometimes also have the capacity of teaching us a gentle yet important lesson. My surprise for the day was this small little book, a set of short stories written by Oscar Wilde and believe me I was simply floored by the simplicity as well as the complexity there was in these tales. ...more
Jul 05, 2013 Alex rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews
A Beautiful Collection for All Ages

Each little story is a beautifully told allegory touching to the heart. You will never be too old or too young to appreciate the marvellous moral in each story.

The stories in this collection are: The Happy Prince, The Nightingale and the Rose, The Selfish Giant, The Devoted Friend, and The Remarkable Rocket.

Many of my favourite epigrams come from this collection. Here are a few gems (of many):

"Surely Love is a wonderful thing. It is more precious than emeral
Debbie Zapata
Dec 13, 2015 Debbie Zapata rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gutenberg
I have found that any author I was forced to read in my ancient school days tends to be ignored these days when I can choose my own reading. Oscar Wilde certainly fits that statement. I remember having to dissect The Picture Of Dorian Gray for some class or other, and the only other work of his I have read since then was The Importance Of Being Earnest. I enjoyed that, but it did not inspire me to discover any more about or by Wilde.

But a few days ago I noticed a review by fellow GR group member
Apr 30, 2015 Mayra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a collection of five short stories, that are fairy-tale-like moral fables, not only for children, but drenched in subtle hints aimed at the older readers.

When questioned about the maturity of the language in his stories, Wilde ridiculed the idea that "extremely limited vocabulary at the disposal of the British child" should be "the standard by which the prose of an artist is to be judged".

These tales are dark and colorful at the same time, and deal mostly with selfishness, compassion, eg
This is a beautiful little collection of stories. I thought I'd never read any of them, but I'd definitely read "The Selfish Giant" before, and some of the others seemed familiar. The stories are all a little like fairy tales, though, so that's probably part of it.

My favourites were "The Nightingale and the Rose" and "The Fisherman and His Soul", I think. All of them are lovely, though. I especially like the beginning of Star-Child. Some of the lines in it are gorgeous, like: "And when they came
Deborah Markus
If this book doesn't make you want to curl up with a nice hot cup of arsenic and maybe some razor blades, you read a different edition than I did. Apparently Wilde read Hans Christian Anderson and thought, "Dang nab it, I can write way way depressing fairy tales, too!"

Not saying it's not pretty. Just saying.
Wilde is a fantastic prose stylist, if you can tolerate his style, and this is one of his most accessible works, as well as a surprising one in many ways for those with certain preconceived notions of the author: Wilde here often puts his aesthetic pose second to his political and moral views - two things that 'Oscar Wilde' wasn't meant to have at all.

On the other hand, this probably isn't the best demonstration of Wilde's skills. The idea of the arch-sophisticate taking on the genre of simple,
Feb 14, 2016 Amina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Amina by: Hitessh Panchal
Short stories with morals, I love that!
As always, many thanks Hitessh for the great recommendation!
Nov 16, 2011 Alice rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Wilde and short stories. Literature/Creative writing students.
I do really like Oscar Wilde, so giving this collectiont three stars pains me somewhat. It's not that they aren't well written, they're just incredibly sad and frustrating. "The Devoted Friend", for example, just annoyed me. There are no happy endings and, call me old fashioned, but I think happy endings in children's stories are a necessity. That being said I read "The Selfish Giant" many times as a child. Whether it did me any good or not remains to be seen!

From an analytical point of view I c
Jun 27, 2015 Alayne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews

Todos son casi igual de trágicos y tristes, aunque algunos duelen mucho más que otros.
En mi edición, que es bastante vieja y estaba forrada por su anterior dueño (la abuela de mi mamá, creo), hay unas ilustraciones muy lindas, aunque no busqué cuál era acá, pero me gustaron mucho.

El príncipe feliz : 4/5; me sonaba la historia, aunque no la conocía del todo, y el cuento en sí me pareció muy hermoso.

El ruiseñor y al rosa : 5/5; me volvió a romper el corazón por 765930 vez. Creo que no import
May 04, 2015 Rxmi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"—Ahora temo que mi historia le haya molestado —dijo el jilguero—. Pero lo cierto es que lo que le conté tenía una moraleja.
—¡Ah! Eso siempre es muy peligroso —reflexionó la pata.
Y yo, yo estoy de acuerdo con ella."

El príncipe feliz: 3/5
El ruiseñor y la rosa: 4/5
El modelo: 3/5
El amigo fiel: 5/5
El reflejo: 4/5
El imán: 5/5

Si bien todas las historias tienen algo para dejar en el lector, no todas supieron encantarme. Mis favoritas terminaron siendo El ruiseñor y la rosa, el cual ya había leí
Mar 10, 2009 Bram rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
I could squirt some tears just thinking about a couple of these stories.
Jun 14, 2013 Anarika rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who likes tales
Recommended to Anarika by: Nadja
I enjoyed reading this today in the sun. I am reading a German version (with English text on one page, German on the other)...Wilde's style is astonishing. These tales are told in a simple way, for kids, but are definitely more than just that. They warm up your heart, even though they are a bit sad. (25th March 2012)
31st March 2012:
They are sad indeed, but they are written so beautifully and they talk about caring about others, winning over our own selfishness, believing in love and in the good
Dec 30, 2015 Eman rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone.
The Happy Prince and Other Tales is my first read for Oscar Wilde, and it won't be the last. It's combined of 5 short stories, each story carries a moral at the end of it. I'm not sure if this book is appropriate to be narrated for kids at bedtime, because... (view spoiler).

How did I like each story?

The Happy Prince:
3 stars, liked it.

The Nightin
Karen ⊰✿
So naturally I only read this as it was written by Wilde, and that is possibly the only reason why it is still in publication because the stories are quite different to contemporary children's tales. Drowning in religion and with very heavy and obvious moral themes, I think readers today prefer a bit more subtlety.
Jul 20, 2016 Ashish rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's something about Wilde's writing which makes it immensely likeable. Simple prose and heart-felt humour makes it a great introduction to his works. The Picture of Dorian Gray and the plays will still be his best, but it takes nothing away from this collection of short stories.
Greg Z
Mar 19, 2016 Greg Z rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
There are two truly beautiful stories here: "The Happy Prince" (which I've read numerous times in other collections) and "The Selfish Giant" (which I've never encountered anywhere and I think it is one of Wilde's best works.) A children's book? Yes. A book for everyone? Absolutely!
Mar 25, 2016 Josiah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Several of Oscar Wilde's classics—including The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Importance of Being Earnest—float between categorization as adult and young-adult literature, but The Happy Prince and Other Tales achieves a rare distinction among the inimitable Mr. Wilde's works: it is purely a children's book, and one born of that time which produced some of the most enduring fare for young readers, the Victorian era. Fairy tales have a venerated history in children's lit, and I can't imagine anyo ...more
Apr 01, 2016 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short stories, simply, elegantly, affectingly and engagingly told.
Sidharth Vardhan
“I like to do all the talking myself. It saves time, and prevents arguments.”

These are a lot like Andersen's tales - fairy-tale kind of prose, talking objects, often with sad elements and sad endings. Add to it, Wilde's popular witticisms. The Rose and Nightingale is one of the most beautiful stories I have read.

“I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying.”

“Life is one fool thing after another whereas love is two fool things after each other.”

“I hate peo
Aug 09, 2015 NobilisGughy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tribolazioni e ingratitudini.
Una morale unisce tutte, o quasi, queste fiabe: il sacrificio e la rinuncia non portano a nulla, non pagano. I protagonisti gettano le braccia al collo del Sacrificio, si immolano per Amore, ma vengono ripagati con l'indifferenza e l'ingratitudine. Una morale, va da sé, profondamente wildiana.

Riaccende una scintilla di speranza, in questo mondo dove non c'è Mistero grande come la Miseria.

Così struggente nel dipingere

“If you want a red rose,” said the Tree, “you must build it out of music by moonlight, and stain it with your own heart’s-blood. You must sing to me with your breast against a thorn. All night long you must sing to me, and the thorn must pierce your heart, and your life-blood must flow into my veins, and become mine.”
“Death is a great price to pay for a red rose,” cried the Nightingale, “and Life is very dear to all. It is pleasant to sit in the green wood, and to watch the Sun in his chariot o
(Review of The Happy Prince as part of the Complete Works of Oscar Wilde.)

Another morality tale brought to you from the hand of Oscar Wilde. The Happy Prince is a statue housing the soul of the prince who had been happy in his life because unhappiness was not allowed, and he didn't know what lay outside his own walls - ignorance is bliss. As a statue, he was able to look out over the land and see all the misery that actually existed.

He asks a swallow to take jewels from his statue to different p
Feb 21, 2015 Jimmy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s-lit
I thought the stories were dreadful and not appropriate for young children. Their only value is part of understanding Oscar Wilde.

This book is a facsimile of the original 1913 edition. Wilde himself died in 1900. The paintings by Charles Robinson are superb.

The publication of this book in 1988 was his first critical success. Wilde was a devoted father to his two sons, Vyvyan and Cyral. Vyvyan speaks of him "going down on all fours on the nursery floor, being in turn a lion, a wolf, a horse, ca
This was one of my favorite collections as a child, and I spent many happy hours reading and re-reading the short stories contained in this volume. The Nightingale and the Rose was a joy to read, as was The Happy Prince, but my favorite by far was The Selfish Giant. Even now, after fifty decades of life, I find myself occasionally going back to re-read this beautiful little story of the walled in giant whose heart was softened by love. It has so much of such importance to teach about the well-li ...more
Ambika Rani
Dec 07, 2015 Ambika Rani rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Ambika by: Amazon Kindle
Shelves: classics
A must read for people of all genres. 5 Stories is all this book contains. But the kind of morals that you can get from these 5 tales are immensely worth forever in your life.

It teaches one, to stop and reflect on essentials of life. What is true friendship? What is the test of true love? What is to let go of one's ego? What makes you a legend in life? The answers to all these questions can be found in this book.
Hoàng Nguyễn
Thật tình mình hiểu vì sao vợ của Oscar Wilde lại thương ông đến vậy ;__; Người viết được những truyện này cho con mình thì không thể nào là người xấu được.

Mà truyện The Happy Prince ấy, hồi tiểu học mình có đọc bản truyện tranh rút ngắn của nó này, tựa là "Hoàng tử Hạnh Phúc", cứ tưởng nó là truyện cổ tích dân gian truyền miệng thôi, ai dè là của Oscar Wilde viết ra ;__;
May 25, 2012 Rowena rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, childrens
I had to make this one of my favourites! I had no idea that Oscar Wilde had written children's stories and I'm glad I discovered this gem at my local library.The poetic language just blew me away. I also enjoyed how he anthropormophized the flowers, birds and other animals. Unlike most fairy tales, quite a few of the stories in this book did not have happy endings but they were keenly felt.
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Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was an Irish playwright, poet and author of numerous short stories and one novel. Known for his biting wit, and a plentitude of aphorisms, he became one of the most successful playwrights of the late Victorian era in London, and one of the greatest celebrities of his day. Several of his plays continue to be widely performed, especially The Importance of Being E ...more
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“I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying.” 61989 likes
“Life is one fool thing after another whereas love is two fool things after each other.” 155 likes
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