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Editorial Reviews

Sara Crewe had a privileged life until her father died, and she went from princess to pauper. Listeners will experience the drastic changes in Sara's life as narrator Virginia Leishman captures the treatment she receives from those around her before and after she becomes penniless. Particularly nasty is schoolmistress Miss Minchin, whose voice drips with contempt. Sara herself acts and sounds like a real princess particularly when she gives up her precious hot buns to a cold, homeless child. Leishman's delivery changes yet again as Sara's fortunes are altered for the better. Listeners will be enriched by this riches to rags, and then back to riches, story.

Publisher's Summary

10-year-old Sarah Crue lives life like a princess until tragedy strikes, taking away her fine clothes and privileges. Without her velvet and silk and French maids, she's no longer the envy of all the girls at Miss Minchin's London boarding school, and even has to live in the school's attic, working for the students who were once her friends. Will Sarah's spirit remain unbowed? Follow her through her trials and triumphs in this unforgettable tale beloved by children the world over.

(P)1996 by Recorded Books, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"A blend of power, beauty, vivid interest and honest goodness. Yes, if this is magic, it is good magic." (The New York Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.7 out of 5.0
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  • Overall

Credit Worthy Narration

Virginia's Leishman's narration is excellent, as is the audio quality. I already own another recording, but I purchased this one because it was available in a better quality. A wonderful story of a little girl's character tested in the face of adversity. Its one of the select few audiobooks that I always keep on my ipod, so that I may listen to random selections.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

One of our Family Classics

When I was young, my mother gave me this book for Christmas. I still have it. She was given a copy from one of her older sisters when SHE was young. It was quite a treat in a time when treats were few; she could escape with Sara from their poverty that necessitated raising chickens behind the house, among other things. They weren't raised for eggs, but fattened in Chicago, not on a farm or in a rural area.
After reading this wonderful story my mother, as a girl, thought all things were possible. I derived the same secret and exciting thought. She wasn't wearing clothing handed down and patched wool stockings; I wasn't wearing things my mom got at the informal neighborhood swap. No, we were wearing beautiful clothing underneath. We could always be kind when someone was mean because we knew who we really were, despite the evil child who socked me in the stomach, and the nasty boy who chased her with a snapping turtle. Many times I remember wishing the floor would open and swallow me. But then I would remember who I really was (or could be) and life would go on as it always did.
Children seem to grow up so fast now, they don't get a chance to imagine and pretend; I gave a copy of this book to each of my nieces when they needed some extra joy and distraction. Psychologists may say the basic unlikeliness of the happy ending is a warped crutch. I thought it was a beautiful tale and if Sara could be happy while waiting for her fondest wish to be granted, couldn't I? So there!

17 of 22 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

Indulge yourself with this one, but bring Kleenex.

The Little Princess is a fantastic novel, offered here with excellent narration. It is an often overlooked classic, but a story that touches the heart and spirit of the child within us all. Wow...that really sounded cheesy. Well, it is in a good way.

It's a Cinderella story without the romance, with less magic and more imagination. A little girl, who appears to be a princess on the outside, has her outwardly riches stripped away. Yet, she is able to remain a "princess," despite dire circumstances, through the strength and beauty within her. It does have a happy ending and all of her efforts to stay true to herself are rewarded in the end. Granted, many of the rewards are back to the physical, but she finally gets the answer to an early question of whether she would stay a princess if luck had changed her fortune and she was met with adversity instead of everything she wanted.

It may have been required reading in your school, but it is still definitely worth a credit!

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Magical and enchanting!

A beautiful story well narrated. Character voices are spectacular and easy to listen to.
The story leads the listener into the book, and is fun to share with the whole family.
We highly recommend this classic from our family of four who were all spellbound. Mother, father, our young prince (12) and our little princess (9)

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Definitely Not the Movie

Would you consider the audio edition of A Little Princess to be better than the print version?

I could have read the book either way but I have decided that I prefer listening to classic books over reading them in print. Therefore, I would say yes.

What about Virginia Leishman’s performance did you like?

She had a great voice to listen to. It was easy to sit back and enjoy listening to the book.

Any additional comments?

The plot is quite different from the two movie versions of the book.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Holly
  • SAN MARCOS, CA, United States
  • 04-27-15

Simply beautiful-

This story took me back to my own 10 year old daydreams of being a princess. So well written and a much copied theme since then. Narration was spot on and gave this story the life it deserves.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Lovely Reading of a Childhood Favorite

This story of a little girl, born in India but placed at a boarding school in London at age 7 for a traditional English education, is a classic. It is an easy read and I found it just as engrossing at age 50 as I did when I was 10 years old. The narration is beautifully done and Virginia Leishman, in accent and delivery, frequently reminds one of Audrey Hepburn's voice. It is a another little gem in audible's library.

If you have seen the Shirley Temple version of this book, PLEASE read the book. As per usual for Hollywood, in the movie the ending is very different, the plot is somewhat changed and characters have been added and/or transformed. If you haven't seen the film, it is worthwhile as well, but very much a different form of entertainment. (The delightful Arthur Treacher co-stars).

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Classic story well read

This is the perfect gift for a little girl age 8 but our teenage daughter enjoyed it too! The story of Sara and her struggles to remain a princess at heart in the midst of tragedy and financial loss is heartwarming and full of suspense. Virginia Leishman's performance was the icing on the cake of a classic story.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Absorbing Riches to Rags to Riches Fairytale

I read this book several times over when I was a kid, and my daughters remind me that they did too. I wasn’t sure it would hold up just as well now that I’m an adult, but it really did. What a treat! Sarah Crewe is an imaginist, a fiction writer extraordinaire; I think I’d never fully realized that before. My youngest daughter says that’s what she always found most comforting and inspirational about the book: Sarah models for any girl (or any boy) how to “create your own safe space, right inside your own head,” where no one can ever take it away.

The narrator is great, perfect for the material, but a tad slow. Sounded perfectly good at 1.25x speed.

Grade: A

2 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Makes me wanna cry

Well, pretty good until this old guy tells Sara that her dad is dead and left her no money and she's a orphan. Yeah, maybe that's a bit of a spoiler. Well in the end this foreign prince or somebody adopts her and saves her from slavery. Personally, it was a pretty good book, even though I almost had a crying fit.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful