Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia

Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia

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by Samuel Johnson
     
 

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The plot is simple in the extreme. Rasselas, son of the King of Abyssinia, is shut up in a beautiful valley, "till the order of succession should call him to the throne." He grows weary of the factitious entertainments of the place, and after much brooding escapes with his sister Nekayah, her attendant Pekuah and his poet-friend Imlac. They are to see the world and

Overview

The plot is simple in the extreme. Rasselas, son of the King of Abyssinia, is shut up in a beautiful valley, "till the order of succession should call him to the throne." He grows weary of the factitious entertainments of the place, and after much brooding escapes with his sister Nekayah, her attendant Pekuah and his poet-friend Imlac. They are to see the world and search for happiness, but after some sojourn in Egypt, where they frequent various classes of society and undergo a few mild adventures, they perceive the futility of their search and abruptly return to Abyssinia.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I wanted them all, even those I'd already read."
—Ron Rosenbaum, The New York Observer

"Small wonders."
Time Out London

"[F]irst-rate…astutely selected and attractively packaged…indisputably great works."
—Adam Begley, The New York Observer

"I’ve always been haunted by Bartleby, the proto-slacker. But it’s the handsomely minimalist cover of the Melville House edition that gets me here, one of many in the small publisher’s fine 'Art of the Novella' series."
The New Yorker

"The Art of the Novella series is sort of an anti-Kindle. What these singular, distinctive titles celebrate is book-ness. They're slim enough to be portable but showy enough to be conspicuously consumed—tiny little objects that demand to be loved for the commodities they are."
—KQED (NPR San Francisco)

"Some like it short, and if you're one of them, Melville House, an independent publisher based in Brooklyn, has a line of books for you... elegant-looking paperback editions ...a good read in a small package."
The Wall Street Journal

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940000871324
Publisher:
B&R Samizdat Express
Publication date:
03/01/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
114 KB

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Samuel Johnson was born in 1709 above his father's bookshop in Lichfield, England. He was a sickly child, scarred by smallpox, with facial and vocal tics, likely symptoms of Tourette Syndrome. But he proved a brilliant student, attending Oxford until a lack of funds forced his departure. (Numerous honorary degrees would later justify his famous sobriquet "Dr." Johnson.) At twenty-five he married Elizabeth "Tetty" Potter, a well-off widow twenty-one years his senior. She funded a school Johnson started, but lost much of her wealth when the school failed. Wracked by guilt, Johnson walked to London and, living virtually on the street, began writing reviews, essays and news for magazines, notably The Idler and The Rambler. In 1744, he published his masterpiece, Life Of Savage, an innovative warts-and-all biography of his friend, writer Richard Savage. Johnson would write several more "lives," culminating in his acclaimed three-volume Lives of The Poets. In 1746 a group of publishers asked Johnson to compile an authoritative English dictionary. He completed the massive undertaking in 1755, and A Dictionary of the English Language would set the standard for the next 150 years. Upon his death in 1784 he was buried in Westminster Abbey. Yet his fame only rose when, in 1791, his friend James Boswell published became the most famous "life" of them all: Life of Samuel Johnson.

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Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A beautifully written book. Wonderful.