The Princess Bride Review

The Princess Bride

Title: The Princess Bride

Author: William Goldman

Pages: 315-ish

Summary: The Princess Bride is a timeless tale that pits country against country, good against evil, love against hate. This incredible journey and artfully rendered love story is peppered with strange beasties monstrous and gentle, memorable surprises both terrible and sublime, and such unforgettable characters as…

Westley, the handsome farm boy who risks death (and much worse) for the woman he loves; Inigo, the Spanish swordsman who lives only to avenge his father’s death; Fezzik, the gentlest giant ever to have uprooted a tree with his bare hands; Vizzini, the evil Sicilian, with a mind so keen he’s foiled by his own perfect logic; Prince Humperdinck, the eviler ruler of Guilder, who has an equally insatiable thirst for  war and the beauteous Buttercup; Count Rugen, the evilest man of all, who thrives on the excruciating pain of others; Miracle Max, the King’s ex-Miracle Man, who can raise the dead (kind of); and, of course, Buttercup…the princess bride, the most perfect, beautiful woman in the history of the world!

Belle Rating: B…I guess…*internal screaming*

Bookworm Rating: B+

Overall Rating: B

Target Audience: Adult/Young Adult

Story Notes:

L – The book begins rather oddly with Goldman inventing a ridiculous backstory about his actual story. He tells us that his book is actually a translation of a much older and larger book. It’s not….

D – This is one of the main issues for me actually. I do not enjoy being deceived into liking a book by drumming out this touching backstory. It was totally unnecessary! I didn’t need all of that to love the book. In fact, this was my first time reading it. I absolutely adore the movie so I thought that this would be amazing. And then I find out that the author did this…and I believed it…not cool…not cool at all.

L – It does come over in the movie a lot better though. I think it makes more sense in that sort of format. At times the interruptions about “the original book” are humorous but overall don’t add much to the story as a whole. I think that their point was to provide more backstory for the world he created and as a bit of satire.

D – It does, which is why I still gave it a good rating. It was also a nice touch to have a bit of backstory for Inigo and Fezzik. You don’t have that kind of connection with those characters in the movie, which is why books are so great! Just read the book.  

L -Yeah. If you’ve seen the movie there isn’t too much more to discuss plot-wise. It’s really about the same, with a few less details. Also Buttercup is much smarter in the movie. Book Buttercup is…..really stupid.

D – OH MY GOSH YESSS!!! Some of the things she says makes me cringe/laugh/have the desire to throw the book. Makes me wonder what Westley saw in her…syllabub….

Writing Style:

L -The writing style of The Princess Bride is pretty fun. The wording is smooth and there’s a really good balance of humor and action. Goldman also did a decent job in balancing out background with the plot in a way that keeps the book from dragging on the slower parts.

D – He usually helped things along by using his lovely (sometimes annoying) “abridgments” scattered throughout the story. Usually they are pretty funny and really do add to the story.

L – I also find it interesting that while the different characters are pretty standard they also each have a distinct personality. I find that this doesn’t happen a lot in books where the characters can be put into set tropes. But Goldman did a good job.

D – And going along with each of the characters having a different personality, they also developed over time differently. Westley wanted to become wealthy enough to care for Buttercup. Buttercup simply wanted to become prettier to impress Westley when she saw him again, and so on and so forth with every other character. It gives them depth, which makes the story all the more interesting. 


D – I had a problem with the commentary. Some of it was unnecessary, as I have said before, and took away from the story. Plus, the book I was reading had a chapter of the book that he has been working on for a while whICH WAS A MISTAKE TO READ!! *dramatically runs away and cries*

L – Yeah, don’t read “Buttercup’s Baby” it’s traumatic and unfinished. So not worth it.

D – Fezzik!!!!!!!!

L – The one weakness for me is that the first half of the book is really good. Which might not come off as a weakness, but the first half being so good makes the last half seem less good in comparison. It’s still alright but lacking something the first half has.

D – I blamed the commentary. It became obnoxious by that point.

L – Hmmm, maybe. It just doesn’t flow as well.

D – Well, things were starting to speed up and he was trying to describe what was going on in like 3 different locations. Then combine that with the stupid comments, and…yea…it kinda killed whatever epic climax he was trying to build.


L – I think that the biggest strength of the book is the plot. It really draws you in and helps you overlook all of the little problems that are in every book. Plus it’s just a really entertaining story.

D – Oh yesss, it’s super funny. If you are a lover of the movie, you will become all the more attached to his characters. They shine in this book. I wish that he could have included more information about them in the movie…and while some of the commentary is frustrating at times, other times it is fun. Picture this crazed old man feeding you information about the book. Sometimes he goes on a tangent…other times it is juicy stuff that will draw you closer to the characters and to the author.

Final Thoughts:

L – This book is very good and I highly recommend it.

D – Just don’t read “Buttercup’s Baby”…at least until he finally finishes it…You have been warned!!!

L – I don’t know if he plans on ever finishing it…

D – *muttering to self* it doesn’t exist, it doesn’t exist, it never happened….*internal screaming*

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