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Discovering the Hidden Wisdom of The Little Prince

In Search of Saint-Exupéry's Lost Child

Translated by Gretchen Schmid

Finally, one of the most of the most beloved books every published—explained.

The Little Prince is revered around the world. Two hundred million copies have been sold in 270 languages; it is the fourth best-selling book of all time. Part of its allure is that is seems incredibly wise but so simple it is read as a work for children. Yet its meaning is elusive, and its place amid the writings of an adventurer and war hero acclaimed for dramatic bestsellers like Night Flight and Flight to Arras is mysterious.

In this elegant, carefully argued book, Pierre Lassus reexamines the story of The Little Prince against the facts of Saint-Exupéry's own extraordinary life, from his cherished but fatherless childhood in aristocratic poverty to his career as a pioneering pilot. His plane had broken down in the desert before. He had adopted a fox, when posted at the Spanish fort of Cape Juby, in southern Morocco. He had known the world of business before becoming pilot; he had also known unrequited love. Like his little protagonist's, his body was never found after his plane disappeared in World War II. He was working on his spiritual autobiography when he died, and there too, Lassus finds resonances and keys to the understated spirituality of his last great book.

"A touching and deeply moving analysis of a book that is cherished by millions. It is hard to imagine that its fans will not appreciate what Lassus has uncovered."—Booklist

"The story behind one of the world's most popular books. . . . Many will enjoy learning about Saint-Exupéry and his life and how he came to write such a beloved book."—Kirkus

“Luminous and enthralling . . . Everything that contributes to its magic is gradually explained.” —L'Express

"His subtle analysis illuminates the universality of the Word according to Saint-Exupéry."—Observateur

"Pierre Lassus, a psychotherapist specializing in the world of childhood, wanted to understand by what paths this charming little blond boy could move such a large audience. . . .The message of The Little Prince, according to him, connects it to the questionings in the Old and New Testaments. A voice in the desert, a sheep, an innocent child wiser than the adults, who 'sees with his heart better than with his eyes.' A child who falls from the sky to open the heart of a man who was lost. . . ."
—Le Monde

"For the writer, The Little Prince was the opportunity to return to his childhood, in search of himself."
—Inexploré

"A very fine study, inspired and poetic." —Le Messager de Saint-Antoine

"The author brings out the spiritual testament the universal message of this symbolic fable."—L'Echo des Vosges

"A touching and deeply moving analysis of a book that is cherished by millions. It is hard to imagine that its fans will not appreciate what Lassus has uncovered."—Booklist

"The story behind one of the world's most popular books. . . . Many will enjoy learning about Saint-Exupéry and his life and how he came to write such a beloved book."—Kirkus

“Luminous and enthralling . . . Everything that contributes to its magic is gradually explained.” —L'Express

"His subtle analysis illuminates the universality of the Word according to Saint-Exupéry."—Observateur

"Pierre Lassus, a psychotherapist specializing in the world of childhood, wanted to understand by what paths this charming little blond boy could move such a large audience. . . .The message of The Little Prince, according to him, connects it to the questionings in the Old and New Testaments. A voice in the desert, a sheep, an innocent child wiser than the adults, who 'sees with his heart better than with his eyes.' A child who falls from the sky to open the heart of a man who was lost. . . ."
—Le Monde

"For the writer, The Little Prince was the opportunity to return to his childhood, in search of himself."
—Inexploré

"A very fine study, inspired and poetic." —Le Messager de Saint-Antoine

"The author brings out the spiritual testament the universal message of this symbolic fable."—L'Echo des Vosges