A Splendid Gift by Alyson Richman

By Alyson Richman

A richly imagined tale of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, French pilot and writer of The Little Prince, from the writer of The misplaced spouse and The backyard of Letters.

March, 1942: Declared medically undeserving to fly whereas France is beseiged by way of warfare, Saint-Exupéry languishes in homesick frustration, not able to assist his country—and not able to jot down. whereas his writer attempts in useless to ease the author's brain, Saint-Exupéry meets the mesmerizing Silvia Hamilton at a dinner party. although they don't proportion a language, they're still attracted to one another, and the place phrases fail them they locate other kinds of communication.

In the continuing months, Silvia's heat and beauty provide Saint-Exupéry the reassurance he so desperately wishes. And as their love affair prospers, he reveals himself encouraged to inform a story of such simplicity and sweetness individual of any age may perhaps locate pleasure and luxury in it. With Silvia as his muse, he works furiously to compose his petite prince.

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Reza nods gravely. “Yes, yes, I know this Niksoon. ” Ponneh rolls her eyes and Saba flips to the center of the magazine, where pictures from this beautiful girl’s life are displayed for millions to see. She is a princess. Shahzadeh Nixon. ), with her flirtatious American grin and her shiny American suitor—a boy so pale and handsome that he could be in the movies if he wasn’t busy beaming over his shoulder at photographers and staring at the fairy girl’s hands as if he were just a little bored. “So lucky,” whispers Ponneh.

And here you are, believing everything they tell you to believe. You don’t know what’s 51 dina nay er i true”—she shakes a finger at Saba and glares—“ultimate truth, real truth like most people don’t see. ” Saba is bursting with the hundred responses that bubble up all at once, but before she can choose, Ponneh jumps to her feet. “Come, Saba,” she says. ” Saba doesn’t move. She looks into the unfocused gaze of this tiny old-world fortune-teller who, through her curtain of cataracts, has seen more of Saba than her own father has.

It is the best in the world. So rare and produced only here in Gilan—and the girls were hanging about under our skirts. ). The girls had a lot of books, but their favorite stories were the kind you hear in the village square from the hundred-year-old toothless goats with long water pipes and tiny stools. Those men talk all day about jinns and paris and how to bring good luck. They tell old stories like Leyli and Majnoon, Rostam, or Zahhak, with the snakes growing out of his shoulders. I recognized the story Mahtab was telling Saba because it came from one of these old men, but I assumed Mahtab didn’t believe it.

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