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Le Livre des Trois (1964)

par Lloyd Alexander

Autres auteurs: Voir la section autres auteur(e)s.

Séries: Chroniques de Prydain {Lloyd Alexander} (1)

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6,6201401,110 (4)3 / 253
Taran, Assistant Pig-Keeper to a famous oracular sow, sets out on a hazardous mission to save Prydain from the forces of evil.
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I wanted to read this since it was the inspiration for much of the original dungeons and dragons. I see now that it's mostly in the world building, and that being pulled from Welsh mythology leaves little credit to the book itself.

There are some funny moments but ultimately the dialog felt forced and overly formal, the plot moved more due to accident and coincidence than the efforts of the characters, and the characters themselves felt flat. It's a product of it's time, I suppose. ( )
  jamestomasino | Sep 11, 2021 |
In which Taran the assistant pig keeper sets out with a merry band of followers, to find a pig and thus save the world.

If the Amazon.com reviews are any indication, Lloyd Alexander's five-book series, The Chronicles of Prydain, has its detractors. They see it as a pale imitation of Lord of the Rings, complete with gollum-esque creature (who at least happens to be working for the good guys). They point out Alexander's expository dialogue, his rapid descriptions that leave little time for characters or sequences to make an impact, and the fact that - unlike the best children's fiction - his work is designed to appeal only to children and not to adults.

Well, I won't deny: all of those things are - to some extent - true. The obvious debt to Tolkien (and C.S. Lewis) is undeniable and occasionally uncanny. And Alexander is neither a literary giant nor a consummate non-literary storyteller on par with, say, J.K. Rowling.

Yet, I'm inclined to think the haters are being a bit unsporting about it all. The Book of Three, which opens the series, is a delightful little quest story. It's an easy, fast-paced read, which opens up an entire world of characters and species. The most delightful characters are the Princess Eilonwy, whose refusal to be relegated to the role of "female" is laudable, and the dwarf Doli, who wishes he could be invisible. Alexander's morals are in the right place for a book aimed squarely at children, but this is no bloodless Narnia. The injuries and horrors committed by the Horned King and his minions are all too real. It really raises the stakes, and if the book is about Taran learning there is more to the world than an idyllic life raising pigs, it succeeds.

There's also a great humanist skein running through the book. Medwyn, the protector of animals, eats only a vegetarian diet, while Taran is constantly forced to learn that there are many outlooks and ways of being in Prydain. And the dialogue is actually quite apt for each character. You know you're in safe hands when Gurgi - Prydain's equivalent of Gollum or, dare I say, Jar Jar Binks - is adorable rather than mawkish.

I do wish sometimes that Alexander would let each sequence breathe. I'm halfway through the second book, The Black Cauldron, and I feel like I've met an endless array of characters while drunk at a party, never able to get a firm grasp on them. But perhaps these are the limitations of a children's author when facing book length and the attention span of youngsters.

Either way, I'll give the thumbs-up to The Chronicles of Prydain so far. Even if it isn't always beautifully or densely written, it's intelligently written, and that makes all the difference. ( )
  therebelprince | Jun 24, 2021 |
Reading this book is like being underneath a warm blanket, which makes it a perfect winter read. ( )
  jobinsonlis | May 11, 2021 |
An old favorite which still more or less holds its own. ( )
  wetdryvac | Mar 2, 2021 |
Read this aloud to my family on the recommendation of a coworker. We liked it. It's a nice little story with a good sense of humor. We're eager to start the next in the series (The Black Cauldron), which reminds me of the video game it inspired that I played as a kid. ( )
  dllh | Jan 6, 2021 |
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» Ajouter d'autres auteur(e)s (12 possibles)

Nom de l'auteur(e)RôleType d'auteurŒuvre ?Statut
Lloyd Alexanderauteur(e) principal(e)toutes les éditionscalculé
Hale, ShannonIntroductionauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Langton, JamesNarrateurauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Lee, Jody A.Artiste de la couvertureauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Maitz, DonArtiste de la couvertureauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Ness, EvalineArtiste de la couvertureauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Pilhjerta, Ritva-LiisaTraducteurauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Wyatt, DavidArtiste de la couvertureauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
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Pour plus d'aide, voir la page Aide sur le Partage des connaissances [en anglais].
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For the children who listened, the grown-ups who were patient, and especially for Ann Durell.
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This chronicle of the Land of Prydain is not a retelling or retranslation of Welsh mythology. Prydain is not Wales—not entirely, at least. The inspiration for it comes from that magnificent land and its legends; but, essentially, Prydain is a country existing only in the imagination.

[From Lloyd Alexander's "Author's Note" to The Book of Three (1964)]
Taran wanted to make a sword; but Coll, charged with the practical side of his education, decided on horseshoes. And so it had been horseshoes all morning long. Taran's arms ached, soot blackened his face. At last he dropped the hammer and turned to Coll, who was watching him critically.

[From "The Assistant Pig-Keeper", chapter 1 of Lloyd Alexander's The Book of Three (1964)]
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Taran, Assistant Pig-Keeper to a famous oracular sow, sets out on a hazardous mission to save Prydain from the forces of evil.

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