The Princess Bride

The Princess BrideReviewed by Hanna

The novel, “Princess Bride” by William Goldman is an adventurous and compelling read.  An interesting addition to the story itself is that when Goldman was a child, he didn’t like reading, until his father introduced him to a book called, “The Princess Bride.”  The book was written by S. Morgenstern originally, and Goldman re-wrote it, summarizing some of the lengthy areas.  Overall, Morgenstern’s novel impacted Goldman’s life greatly.  As the story is going on, Goldman’s father is “reading” the book to him.

So the main storyline taking place in the book is about a girl named Buttercup who is very privileged and falls in love with her farm boy.  The story takes place in Florin.   She confesses her love for him, but he leaves to pursue his dreams in America.  She is left heartbroken, and is asked by the prince of Florin to marry him.  Buttercup refuses to marry him, but he threatens her and her family, so she is forced to go through with the deal.  Buttercup later hears news that Westley (the farm boy she fell in love with), is dead.  Buttercup is miserable, with her engagement to the prince and the news about Westley, so she rides off into the forest to calm down.  Little does she know, three criminals were planning to capture her and kill her to start a war between Florin and Guilder (Florin’s biggest rival).  If they capture the soon-to-be princess of Florin it would cause a stir in Florin’s society.  The criminals successfully capture Buttercup, and take her to a place called “The Cliffs of Insanity.”  A hooded black figure follows them up the treacherous journey to the top of the cliffs.  Vizzini, Fezzik, and Inigo are the names of the three criminals.  Each criminal has a certain story and trait about them.  Vizzini is the mastermind, Inigo is the skilled fighter, and Fezzik is the strong giant.  The man in black has a battle with each one of the criminals, with each of their particular strengths, a battle of wits with Vizzini, battle of strength with Fezzik, and a battle of endurance with Inigo.  Vizzini is killed in his battle. The man in black succeeds in all of the battles, and takes Buttercup with him.  He reveals himself to be Westley and they reunite.

The prince hears that Buttercup has been captured and sends his men to search for her.  Meanwhile, Buttercup and Westley have to keep moving so the prince won’t find Buttercup and force her to marry him.  They travel through the life-threatening Fire Swamp, in which no one survives.  Both of the lovers survive, but the power hungry prince finds them and captures Buttercup again.  Buttercup only agrees to go with him if Westley was kept safe.  The prince agreed and was off with Buttercup.  Meanwhile, Fezzik and Inigo reunite, and try and find Westley.  Westley is taken to a place in the prince’s castle, called “The Zoo of Death.” Westley is tortured there and eventually killed, and no one has any knowledge of his whereabouts.  Fezzik and Inigo find Westley after an extensive search, they realize he is dead, so they take him to Miracle Max.  Miracle Max is a “magic doctor”, who can revive people, and sometimes bring people back to life.  He agreed to help Westley come back, and it worked.  Westley came back to life, but Buttercup was getting married in one hour to a horrid prince.  Fezzik, Inigo, and Westley finally make their way to the castle, where the wedding was and try to save Buttercup.  The prince fights Westley, and the prince ends up hurt.  The three heroes, needed a way out of the castle without getting trapped by the guards.  Fezzik was already outside the castle wandering around, so he brought the prince’s horses right outside the window where they were all standing, and they jumped.  Buttercup and Westley rode off together, with no care in the world.  The ending of the book did not disappoint, it was the perfect mix of adventure and romance.  The point where Westley dies was the most baffling because there are not many ways to end the book.  After they overcome all of the obstacles they encounter, it makes the whole journey worth it.

I enjoyed this book very much.  There was a lot of character development and symbolism.  Each character has a very detailed back story that adds to the main plot.  I rate this book five stars out of five stars.  It was enjoyable and it kept you guessing what would happen next.  Each character grew as a person, and discovered their real capabilities.  Fezzik realized he is not just strong, he has a brain too, and he needs to use it.  Inigo had a new found confidence in him, now not always relying on others.  Buttercup found true love, but had to sacrifice a lot and prove her love for Westley.  Westley opened his mind, and created different strategies to help the person he loved.  Overall, after reading the book, you think of all the adversity the lovers had to overcome to just reach each other.

Check out The Princess Bride at the Newport Beach Public Library.

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