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The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde

The Selfish Giant (1888)

by Oscar Wilde, Mary Hollingsworth (Story retold by), Oscar Wilde

Other authors: Oscar Wilde (Original author), Oscar Wilde (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Happy Prince and Other Tales (3)

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Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Oscar Wilde! Oscar Wilde is awesome, right? Not to mention decadent, unconventional...?
Well, you wouldn't guess it from this tale.

This is a saccharine, moralizing story with a bit of a priggish attitude. The Christian allegory could not be more blatant if this were a retelling of a Bible verse.

A selfish giant doesn't allow any of the children to play in his garden. Because of his attitude, the garden becomes a bleak place where spring never blooms. But he eventually learns to mend his ways, and reaps the rewards... ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
I didn't know Oscar Wilde wrote this children's story, so when I found this in my college library I was excited to read it! It is a great tale about two young children and a giant. I think it would be a great fairy tale to read aloud! ( )
  RuthFinnigan | Jun 8, 2015 |
The Selfish Giant is a story about a giant who discovers two children playing in his garden. He then builds a wall around his garden to prevent them from playing. His garden remains in winter without the children. When he hears music outside of his window, he sees the children playing in his garden and winter has disappeared. He's overcome with joy, but when he notices a little boy who's trying to climb a tree he helps him onto the tree. I don't want to give more than that away as a way to intrigue others to read the story. I'd recommend this story for children to learn how being selfish prevents individuals from fully enjoying life. ( )
  jwesley | Apr 20, 2015 |
The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde

This children's book is a beautifully told and illustrated story about a giant who has a lovely garden in which all of the children love to come and play. There are always butterflies, birds and all manner of wild life, lovely flowers and blossoms on the trees.
The giant has been away for many years visiting a friend and when he returns and finds all of the children playing in his beautiful garden he turns them out and builds a wall around the garden. It is his garden and he intends to enjoy it alone.
But strangely enough after a bit the flowers die, the birds stop singing and then stop coming, the butterflies no longer come and winter takes over the garden. The giant is puzzled and unhappy about this turn of events.
Then one day the children find a chink in the fence and return to the garden. The giant looks out and is astonished to see a child in each tree and the trees blossoming again, hear the birds singing again and winter fading away. Once more the garden is a delightful and beautiful place. All except one corner. The giant notices that winter remains in one corner of the garden. At the bottom of the tree in that corner is a little boy who is trying so hard to get up into the tree but just isn't tall enough. So the giant picks the little boy up and places him within the branches of the tree and immediately spring has arrived in this corner of the garden as well.
The giant is very happy, removes the garden wall and spends the remainder of his days watching the children play and playing with them in the garden. The giant watched the seasons change but was not sad about it for he knew that spring was just around the corner.
One winter day he is quite surprised to look out and see that the corner of his garden had blossoms on the tree. He had aged considerably by this time and slowly plodded out to the corner of the garden. The tree was covered in glorious blossoms, the leaves were golden colored and silver fruit hung abundantly from its branches. But the best thing of all is that his little friend whom he had lifted into the tree many, many years ago was beneath the tree. The giant opened his arms to the child but then stopped in anger as he saw where the child had been horribly injured with a wound in each of his palms and each of his wee feet. The injuries were prints of nails. The little boy spoke to the giant, telling him not to be angry; that the wounds were wounds of love.
The giant fell to his knees and asked the little boy who he was. The little boy spoke and said that a long time ago the giant had let him play in his garden and now he had come to take the giant to his garden which was called "Paradise".
When the children came into the garden that afternoon they found the giant lying dead under the tree, covered with white blossoms and with a smile on his face.
The artwork in this story is beyond lovely as is the story. I rated it 5* and highly recommend it to children young and old. ( )
2 vote rainpebble | Jul 5, 2013 |
I did not enjoy this story and would not recommend this book for kids. The original story line is great but in the end the author talks about religion. This kind of confused me so I could only imagine what children would get from this story. However, the illustrations were beautiul!
  A.Smith | Nov 23, 2012 |
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» Add other authors (25 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Wilde, Oscarprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hollingsworth, MaryStory retold bymain authorall editionsconfirmed
Wilde, Oscarmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Wilde, OscarOriginal authorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wilde, OscarAuthorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Beatrice, ChrisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Danska, HerbertIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jarvis, MartinNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Parazzoli, P.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zimdars, BertaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0907234305, Hardcover)

A once selfish giant welcomes the children to his previously forbidden garden and is eventually rewarded by an unusual tiny child.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:08 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

A once selfish giant welcomes the children to his previously forbidden garden and is eventually rewarded by an unusual tiny child.

» see all 6 descriptions

Legacy Library: Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde has a Legacy Library. Legacy libraries are the personal libraries of famous readers, entered by LibraryThing members from the Legacy Libraries group.

See Oscar Wilde's legacy profile.

See Oscar Wilde's author page.

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