The Little Prince
The Little Prince is the most translated and bestselling French book in the world. Ranked by Le Monde as one of the hundred best books of the 20th century, it tells the story of a young prince who visits various planets in space, including earth, and tackles themes such as loneliness, loss, friendship, and love. An aviator by profession, like the character who meets the Little Prince, the inspiration for this tale is said to have come to Saint-Exupéry on a journey between Saigon and Paris, when the plane he was flying was forced to land in the Libyan desert. With its characteristic salmon-coloured cloth binding and illustrated dust jacket, the work was first published in English. Despite the author's French nationality, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was living in New York, a refugee from Occupied France, where the first edition of the work was published in 1943. The watercolour illustrations, fundamental to the work, were also by Saint-Exupéry, who disappeared just the following year in a reconnaissance flight over the Mediterranean.