BOOK REVIEW – The Happy Prince and Other Tales – Oscar Wilde

age group

It was in school, in an English class that I encountered a few of Oscar Wilde’s works. Later, as I grew, I went on to read many other great writers. Yet even today, Oscar Wilde remains one of my all-time favourite writers. Stories such as The Selfish Giant, The Fisherman and his Soul, and The Nightingale and the Rose have stayed with me for decades since I last read them.

Oscar Wilde- Irish playwright, novelist, essayist, and poet, was born in October 1854 and died in November 1900.  This book is a collection of some of Oscar Wilde’s works especially written for children. It includes five stories: The Happy Prince, The Nightingale and the Rose, The Selfish Giant, The Devoted Friend, and The Remarkable Rocket. These stories are apt for all ages and though written as fairy tales, they are remarkably poignant and would appeal even to teenagers and adults. First published in May 1888, the collection remains timeless to this day. Unlike conventional children’s books, it doesn’t talk down to children nor does it adhere to the “happy endings” format. But each story also carries a beautifully told moral without being preachy in any way.

Introduce your children to the world of Wilde and who knows, maybe a few years later, they, like me, will still carry some of the stories within them.