Wind, Sand and Stars

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

oh... maybe I'm just a sucker for Saint-Exupéry.Let me go on about the title.It just doesn't translate into English.I LIKE the traditional English title, Wind, Sand, and Stars, but the puns all get lost.They'd get lost no mattr how you translate it, though.In French, la terre is not just the world, the earth, but also earth, dirt, ground and land; there are puns on terrain—terraine, landscape—and territoire, territory—the word atterrir, TO LAND an aeroplane, literally means to alight on earth.So all these things get talked about, man's relationship to earth from above and from ON the earth, but also you get quite a bit of the literal translation "world of men"—a plea for peace and for environmental moderation.(All the early aviators are blown away by the beauty of the earth from the air.)

My favorite part of this book is where he lands on an inaccessible plateau in North Africa and, after marvelling that he is the first living thing EVER to have drawn breath here, notices that the place is littered with meteorites.And what is so wonderful about this book is not that St. X experienced that moment, but that through him, *I* get to experience it too."Nous demandons à boire, mais nous demandons aussi à communiquer."The pages are filled with the desperation to communicate, man's love of solitude tempered and ruined by his dependence on others.This is the landscape of The Little Prince—all the characters are here, and were real.

Incidentally, I'd forgotten what a huge influence the core story in this book—plane crash in the desert and subsequent brush with nearly dying of thirst—was on my own book, The Sunbird.

This is the first time I've read this book in French.It's not long and it's very accessible to the struggling Francophile.

Book tags: wind,, sand, and, stars, epub, download, epub, antoine de saint-exupéry

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