The Princess Bride, by William Goldman

The Princess Bride by William Goldman

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

“Not to be confused with William Goldman.”, Wikipedia helpfully told me when I looked up Golding – and yet I did confuse flashy, flamboyant Goldman with the unpretentious Golding. A grave mistake.

“The Princess Bride”, supposedly the “good parts only” version of his alter ego’s novel, starts with an introduction by its author whom I immediately disliked after reading it. His often-occurring interruptions of an extremely banal and simple story were further aggravating.

I also strongly disliked pretty much every single character: Buttercup, beautiful and an enormously stupid damsel-in-distress; the perfect Westley who is basically super-human from his first appearance onwards; Humperdinkh, the plotting prince of the land; the evil six-fingered count – I was almost bored to death by them all.

The story is mind-numbingly daft: Girl rejects boy in favour of a prince, boy finds fame/infamy, girl gets rescued by boy, consequently regrets all her life choices and tries to make amends.

Cliché after cliché after cliché as Goldman does could have led to a biting satire but this drivel reads more like an homage to the “cloak & sword” genre that is, thankfully, quite dead.

I rarely don’t finish a book (in fact, at the time of writing, it’s number 11 in 48 years); much more rarely at 74% but this sorry effort of a novel made me want to stop reading entirely.

One star out of five. Oh, and happy holidays!

Ceterum censeo Putin esse delendam

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