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Candide, Zadig and Selected Stories Mass Market Paperback – January 6, 2009


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Signet Classics (January 6, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451531159
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451531155
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 4.1 x 6.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #38,436 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: French --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

François-Marie Arouet, writing under the pseudonym Voltaire, was born in 1694 into a Parisian bourgeois family. Educated by Jesuits, he was an excellent pupil but one quickly enraged by dogma. An early rift with his father—who wished him to study law—led to his choice of letters as a career. Insinuating himself into court circles, he became notorious for lampoons on leading notables and was twice imprisoned in the Bastille.

By his mid-thirties his literary activities precipitated a four-year exile in England where he won the praise of Swift and Pope for his political tracts. His publication, three years later in France, of Lettres philosophiques sur les Anglais (1733)—an attack on French Church and State—forced him to flee again. For twenty years Voltaire lived chiefly away from Paris. In this, his most prolific period, he wrote such satirical tales as “Zadig” (1747) and “Candide” (1759). His old age at Ferney, outside Geneva, was made bright by his adopted daughter, “Belle et Bonne,” and marked by his intercessions in behalf of victims of political injustice. Sharp-witted and lean in his white wig, impatient with all appropriate rituals, he died in Paris in 1778—the foremost French author of his day.


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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By JHF on January 10, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you are reading this, you probably know the merits of Voltaire's classic Candide; so I will comment on this particular translation and edition. Donald M. Frame's translation is the best in my view. Frame also wrote the introduction to the 1961 Signet printing. John Iverson supplies the introduction to the new (2001) printing. In addition to Frame's lively translation, and Iverson's introduction, this volume contains 15 other short works by Voltaire and helpful notes and a glossary. This is the best edition of Volataire's Candide that you can buy - and you can't beat the price of 5 bucks!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on September 1, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This Signet edition of Voltaire's finest works is THE Candide to buy. It has 15 other classic Voltaire works FIFTEEN!! Now that's a great deal without all the bells and whistles!

I remember first being introduced to Voltaire (1694-1778) when I was looking ahead in my history book in school, as was my "pasttime" and was one of the ways how I became a trivial nerd who can name dates and events almost like Rain Man. His picture attracted me because of that smart-aleky grin always on his face. This was a bit surprising considering everyone took serious portraits in that time.

Before long after starting to read this good stuff, you'll have a grin on your face too.

The Age of Reason is where Marie-Francois Arouet, better known by the pen name of Voltaire comes from and it is the setting of one of the most famous satires of all time.

Published in 1759, Voltaire takes apart the philisophical quote by Gottfried Lebniz (1646-1716) which states that, the seventeenth/eighteenth century was "The Best of all Possible Worlds." In Candide, the title naiive character is about to find out just how "great" an era the eighteenth century was.

Next to Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift (1667-1745)-whom Voltaire knew and admired, Candide is the most famous satire ever written. It has the best tragical irony and is combined to make it one very memorable and funny reading experience. It seems to me that the eighteenth century was just begging, bowing, scraping, and grovelling to be taken apart by satire and parody, and who would be better to expose the woes of its society than Voltaire, Swift, Alexander Pope (1688-1744), and all the rest of those satirizing cats?!

Probably Mikhail Bulgakov and/or Nikolai Gogol, but those two cats were LATER.

That brings us to the conclusion that there was

NOBODY, THAT'S WHO!!!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 6, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Candide is one of my most favorite philosophical works because of the humor, honesty, and original perspective that Voltaire brings to this story. This translation is recommended because it also contains many other excellent works from Voltaire, such as Zadig and Micromegas. The translator's notes are very helpful, and in many cases shed light upon Voltaire's intended meaning when the English is not able to convey everything.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By treehouse on June 25, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I purchased this collected works of Voltaire a couple of years ago and quite enjoyed it. However, I did read an older translation of Candide from a used book-store a couple of years earlier and I found that some of the irony and overall tone was communicated better. That said, there really isn't anything terrible wrong with this translation and, of course, it's a great deal; you get all of these works in one book. I think mine cost $5 U.S. I recommend this book, each individual story would cost you at least 5 dollars.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 22, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although, perhaps, it wasn't ment to be, Volatire's work is uplifting. Sometimes a man faces something that enraged him to such a depth, he either has to cry or laugh about it. Its good to be able to laugh about injustice, betrayal, and every other inborn, basic flaw of the pompous human race we all have the pleasure to be part of. This is one of the best satires I've ever read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Gho on May 8, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Each story is just perfect. It is hard to drop this book for more than a few moments, until it is finished.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By lubo on December 9, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This is my favorite because it is the most interesting and funny one I have ever read. Someone wrote that Voltaire's works are a hype and the only good story is Candide. That just isn't true. Furthermore, Candide is the story in the book that I like the least, although it is really really really funny (especially the wars and the punishments!). The others are more serious and make you think about a lot of things. One of them is considering others inferior.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joann Bandomer on October 2, 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Gave this as a gift only expecting Candide but was happy to see the other two selections..a classic to be sure
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