The Happy Prince and Other Tales is a collection of five stories by Oscar Wilde, dealing primarily with love and selfishness. The stories are generally sad, with a moralistic message. Sometimes sweet and uplifting, sometimes caustic and pointed, they all are well worth listening to.
The Happy Prince is a beautiful tale about a statue of a prince, but one who can now see his city and kingdom and the sadness of his people. With the help of a little swallow he does what he can to help others.
The Nightingale and the Rose is a tale of self-sacrifice, selfishness and misunderstanding.
The Selfish Giant learns a valuable lesson about the laughter of children.
The Devoted Friend is a caustic tale about false friendship.
The Remarkable Rocket explores the self-delusion of people (and rockets) who think the world revolves around them.
Oscar Wilde said of his story The Happy Prince that it was ”an attempt to treat a tragic modern problem in a form that aims at delicacy and imaginative treatment; it is a reaction against the purely imitative character of modern art.” His Fairy Tales were only partly written for children and as he said, ”partly for those who have kept the childlike faculties of wonder and joy, and who find in simplicity a subtle strangeness”.
The Happy Prince and Other Tales, was published in 1888. E-Book, ePUB, length 16,300 words, average reading time 1 hour, 25 min. Unabridged full version. Also available as audiobook read by Noel Badrian, running time 1 hour, 52 min.