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Candide: Or Optimism (Penguin Classics) Paperback – February 24, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 2,948 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Winner of the 2012 Fifty Books/Fifty Covers show, organized by Design Observer in association with AIGA and Designers & Books

Winner of the 2014 Type Directors Club Communication Design Award

Praise for Penguin Drop Caps:

"[Penguin Drop Caps] convey a sense of nostalgia for the tactility and aesthetic power of a physical book and for a centuries-old tradition of beautiful lettering."
Fast Company

“Vibrant, minimalist new typographic covers…. Bonus points for the heartening gender balance of the initial selections.”
—Maria Popova,
Brain Pickings

"The Penguin Drop Caps series is a great example of the power of design. Why buy these particular classics when there are less expensive, even free editions of
Great Expectations? Because they’re beautiful objects. Paul Buckley and Jessica Hische’s fresh approach to the literary classics reduces the design down to typography and color. Each cover is foil-stamped with a cleverly illustrated letterform that reveals an element of the story. Jane Austen’s A (Pride and Prejudice) is formed by opulent peacock feathers and Charlotte Bronte’s B (Jane Eyre) is surrounded by flames. The complete set forms a rainbow spectrum prettier than anything else on your bookshelf."
—Rex Bonomelli, 
The New York Times

"Drool-inducing."
Flavorwire

"Classic reads in stunning covers—your book club will be dying."
Redbook

About the Author

Voltaire (1694-1778) French writer, satirist, the embodiment of the 18th-century Enlightenment. Among his best-known works is the satirical short story CANDIDE (1759).

Michael Wood (introducer) is currently Straut Professor of English at Princeton. His books include Stendhal, America in the Movies, The Magician's Doubts, Franz Kafka, and The Road to Delphi.

Theo Cuffe (translator) has also translated a selection of Voltaire's short stories for Penguin, Micromégas and Other Short Fictions.
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Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ 0140455108
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Penguin Classics; Reprint edition (February 24, 2009)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 155 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 9780140455106
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0140455106
  • Reading age ‏ : ‎ 18 years and up
  • Lexile measure ‏ : ‎ 1110L
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 5.5 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 7.84 x 5.3 x 0.5 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 2,948 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
2,948 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on January 2, 2023
3 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on August 31, 2022
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Top reviews from other countries

Al
5.0 out of 5 stars Outrageous, shocking, scandalous....
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on December 15, 2017
16 people found this helpful
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Dr. Alastair M. D. Gemmell
1.0 out of 5 stars A very poor translation of the original.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on October 18, 2019
9 people found this helpful
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Book Bonkers
3.0 out of 5 stars A French Swift, a good read!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on June 25, 2017
11 people found this helpful
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SueKich
3.0 out of 5 stars Candide: A glass-half-full kind of a guy.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on April 18, 2018
6 people found this helpful
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Pirie Reads
3.0 out of 5 stars Candide by Voltaire
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on December 28, 2020