The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. Published by MobileReference (mobi)

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This is an electronic edition of the complete book complemented by author biography. This book features the table of contents linked to every chapter. The book was designed for optimal navigation on the Kindle, PDA, Smartphone, and other electronic readers. It is formatted to display on all electronic devices including the Kindle, Smartphones and other Mobile Devices with a small display.


The Count of Monte Cristo (French: Le Comte de Monte-Cristo) is an adventure novel by Alexandre Dumas, p?re. It is often considered, along with The Three Musketeers, as Dumas' most popular work. It is also among the highest selling books of all time. The writing of the work was completed in 1844. Like many of his novels, it is expanded from the plot outlines suggested by his collaborating ghostwriter Auguste Maquet.

The story takes place in France, Italy, islands in the Mediterranean and the Levant during the historical events of 1815?1838 (from just before the Hundred Days through the reign of Louis-Philippe of France). The historical setting is a fundamental element of the book. It is primarily concerned with themes of hope, justice, vengeance, mercy, forgiveness and death, and is told in the style of an adventure story.

? Excerpted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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Customer Reviews:

  • Man of mystery with a mission
    The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas p¨¨re. Highly recommended.

    As translator Robin Buss points out in his introduction, many of those who haven't read The Count of Monte Cristo assume it is a children's adventure story, complete with daring prison escape culminating in a simple tale of revenge. There is very little for children in this very adult tale, however. Instead, the rich plot combines intrigue, betrayal, theft, drugs, adultery, presumed infanticide, torture, suicide, poisoning, murder, lesbianism, and unconventional revenge.

    Although the plot is roughly linear beginning with Edmond Dant¨¨s' return to Marseille, prenuptial celebration, and false imprisonment and ending with his somewhat qualified triumphant departure from Marseille and France, Dumas uses the technique of interspersing lengthy anecdotes throughout. The story of Cardinal Spada's treasure, the origins of the Roman bandit Luigi Vampa (the least germane to the novel), Bertuccio's tale of his vendetta, and the account of the betrayal and death of Ali Pasha are few of the more significant stories-within-the-novel. While Dumas devotes an entire chapter to bandit Luigi Vampa's background, he cleverly makes only a few references to what will remain the plot's chief mystery-how the youthful, intelligent, and naive sailor Edmond Dant¨¨s transforms himself into the worldly, jaded, mysterious Renaissance man and Eastern philosopher, the count of Monte Cristo, presumably sustained by his own advice of "wait" and "hope."

    This novel is not a simple tale of simple revenge. The count does not kill his enemies; he brilliantly uses their vices and weaknesses against them. Caderousse's basic greed is turned against him, while Danglars loses the only thing that has any meaning for him. Fernand is deprived of the one thing that he had that he had never earned-his honour. In the process, he loses the source of his initial transgression, making his fate that much more poignant. The plot against Villefort is so complicated that even Monte Cristo loses control of it, resulting in doubt foreign to his nature and remorse that he will not outlive.

    This long but generally fast-paced is set primarily in Marseille, Rome, and Paris. It begins with Dant¨¨s' arrival in Marseille aboard the commercial vessel Pharaon and ends with his departure from Marseille aboard his private yacht, accompanied by the young, beautiful Greek princess Hayd¨¦e. What gives The Count of Monte Cristo its life, however, are the times in which it is set-the Revolution, the Napoleonic era, the First and Second Restoration, and the Revolution of 1830. Life-and-death politics motivates many of the characters and keeps the plot moving. Dumas also uses real people in minor roles, such as Countess G- (Byron's mistress) and the Roman hotelier Signor Pastrini, which adds to the novel's sense of historical veracity.

    The most troubling aspect of The Count of Monte Cristo is Edmond Dant¨¨s himself. His claim to represent a higher justice seems to justify actions and inactions that are as morally reprehensible as those that sent him to prison, for example, his account of how he acquired Ali and his loyalty. Had he not discovered young Morrel's love for Valentine Villefort, she too might have become an innocent victim. As it is, there are at least two other innocents who die, although one clearly would not have been an innocent for long based on his behaviour in the novel. One wonders of Dant¨¨s' two father figures, his own flower-loving father and fellow prisoner Abb¨¦ Faria, would have approved of the count.

    The translation appears to be good, with a few slips into contemporary English idioms that sound out of place. In his introduction, Buss states that the later Danglars and Fernand have become unrecognizable and that Fernand in particular has been transformed "from the brave and honest Spaniard with a sharp sense of honour . . . to the Parisian aristocrat whose life seems to have been dedicated to a series of betrayals." There is never anything honest or honourable about Fernand; his very betrayal of Edmond is merely the first we know of in his lifelong pattern.

    What seems extreme and somewhat unrealistic about Fernand is his transformation from an uneducated Catalan fisherman into a "Parisian aristocrat," hobnobbing with statesmen, the wealthy, and the noteworthy of society. This, however, is the result of the milieu that the novel inhabits. During these post-Revolution, post-Napoleonic years, Fernand could rise socially through his military and political accomplishments just as Danglars does through his financial acumen. Danglars is careful to note that the difference between them is that Fernand insists upon his title, while Danglars is openly indifferent to and dismissive of his; his viewpoint is the more aristocratic.

    Countess G- is quick to point out that there is no old family name of Monte Cristo and that the count, like many other contemporaries, has purchased his title. It serves mainly to obscure his identity, nationality, and background and to add to the aura of mystery his persona and Eastern knowledge create. What is most telling is that his entr¨¦e into Parisian society is based primarily on his great wealth, not his name. Dumas reinforces this point with Andrea Cavalcanti, another mystery man of unknown name and reputed fortune.

    I have read The Man in the Iron Mask and The Three Musketeers series, both of which surprised me with their dark aspects (the character and fate of Lady de Winter, for example) and which little resembled the adventure stories distilled from them for children and for film. When I overheard a college student who was reading The Count of Monte Cristo on the bus tell a friend that she couldn't put it down, I was inspired to read it. I couldn't put it down, either, with its nearly seamless plot, dark protagonist, human villains, turbulent historical setting, and larger-than-life sense of mystery. At 1,078 pages, it's imposing, but don't cheat yourself by settling for an abridged version. You'll want to pick up every nuance.

    Diane L. Schirf, 12 September 2004....more info
  • A Masterpiece for All Times.
    Every year amusement parks around the world spend millions of dollars trying to build the biggest and fastest roller coasters. These parks seek to give their visitors the greatest thrills possible on these rides without actually endangering the riders and thrill seekers flock to these parks by the thousands in order to take what they hope will be the ride of their lives. My advice is to skip the long trips and even longer lines and take a ride with Alexander Dumas and Edmond Dantes. No technology known to man can match the excitement and adventure you will thus find.

    Make no mistake; this will be a long and sometimes bumpy ride. Dumas occasionally will drop his reader into a chapter that seems to have no relevance to any of the chapters before it. After a while though, it will all become crystal clear as this master storyteller weaves his magic. There will be twists and turns that the reader will not be able to foresee and in the end you will marvel at the scope of the story and the extent of both the vengeance and kindness of the story's hero.

    As with many great works of literature, there have been many film adaptations of this book. Some were of course better than others were but none of these films come close to doing this book justice. If you have watched any or all of these films, be prepared to find that the book will often only resemble the films in that the characters have the same names. At least the characters that make it into the films will have the same names but many of the characters in the book never make it into the films. This book is simply too rich and too deep to be captured on film. To really experience Dumas' work you simply must read the book.

    This is a story of love lost, of deception, jealousy and murder. Within this book the reader will find villains so vile that they seem almost inhuman but when their downfall comes it is so terrible that one almost feels for these wretched creatures. All through the book the reader sees the story building to a climax, but it builds slowly. So slowly in fact that the reader will be almost on the edge of his or her seat as they wait for the inevitable falling of the ax. When the final act does finally come, the reader will know the characters so well that they will almost be able to feel their agony. On the other hand, the reader will also see that the Count's victims would not have become victims but for their own greed and pride. The traps laid by the Count simply would not have worked had not his victims been ruled by same vices that led them to wrong Dantes in the first place. As with all great works of fiction, the moral lessons are there, but buried under the surface so that they don't interfere with a great story.

    This is indeed a great story....more info
  • It's All Good
    The book arrived in excellent condition and it has been a delightful book to read.

    ...more info
  • It's All Good
    The book arrived in excellent condition and it has been a delightful book to read.

    ...more info
  • Comte De Monte Cristo
    Greatest book ever written. Don't wimp out. get the unabridged edition and enjoy!...more info
  • eternal mystery
    This book is amazing. Dumas's style has been criticised for its luxuriousness, but it has the great virtue that it always has the vision of something half-comprehensible behind the humdrum life. Some of his sentances are crafted with such mastery of language it is almost inconcievable. The beauty of this book is that, though we understand Edmonde Dantes, the Count of Monte Cristo is eternally a mystery. With every other character we get incites into thier mind, thier reactions, passions etc. For the Count, we get only the perceptions of others and thus never know the main character of one of the greatest books of all time....more info
  • Revenge is best served cold
    Edmond Dantes, a kind compasionate young man about to begin the journey of his life. He is preparing to captain a ship. He is preparing to marry the girl of his dreams and start a family, begin his life.

    Suddenly, out of nowhere, he is destroyed.

    A vain little man in a position of power strikes him down, sends him to a living death in order to avoid the truths being revealed about a relative. Three people lie to destroy him for their own personal gain.

    He is condemned to a living death in isolation in the notorious prison of the doomed. Where he rots until one day another inmate inadvertently digs his way into his cell. And together they work to escape. The Kindly Abbe shares with him all he knows, including the location of a vast fortune.

    Upon making his escape, he returns to learn the vile truth, and then with his new found wealth and knowledge systematicly brings those who wronged him down one by one. But he also takes care of those who tried to help him for an eye for an eye is a measure of justice not just revenge.

    But revenge has consequences.

    A great novel, better than any of the movies made so far. ...more info
  • The Count of Monte Cristo
    I boutht this for my Grandson freshman class in World History. He enjoyed the book and recieved a good grade on his report...more info
  • Difficult to read but well worth it.
    How does one review a classic? Especially one so noteworthy as to have demanded the creation of 11 or more film variations, numerous adaptations, and even television series? I long avoided reading this novel due mainly to it's daunting size, and the fear that it's translation would cause the reader more work than I was willing to put into it. However my burning desire to know the true tale of Edmond Dantes overruled my hesitation.

    The story, for those of you who are unfamiliar, follows Edmond Dantes in his wrongful imprisonment at the hands of his friends, his 14 years in the Chateau D'If, his escape and rebirth as a self proclaimed hand of vengeance against those who had wronged him. If you have only seen the movies, the book, particularly the ending, is far different than what Hollywood has created. There are no dramatic duels, no massive swordfights with brigands, and not everyone who we believe should, lives happily ever after. This is instead a slow but genius work of Dantes methodically stripping away all that his enemies held dear to them, at whatever cost. None die by his hand, but are rather destroyed by his influence, and their own evil choices come back to haunt them.

    The story itself is genius, interesting and very fun. The writing, particularly the translation that I read, is an often difficult and sometimes tedious work that one may need a notebook to keep straight. The cast of characters is very large and they are often referred to by different names, making it a bit more difficult to keep track of who is who without some sort of note taking. I was not smart enough to take notes, and thus had to spend quite a bit of time searching my brain to make sure I was thinking of the correct person as I read, particularly with some of the more minor story lines and the characters that weaved in and out of the story with multiple chapters between their appearances. Also, this book will probably be disappointing to those who are interested in the action that the movies provided. The Count of Monte Cristo, does not come in with guns blazing, but rather plays a very well thought out and disturbing game of mental chess against his opponents. As readers we hope for their downfall, but also wonder how far the Count will go... his years of imprisonment have left him hardened and disturbingly without remorse at the use of innocents to gain his vengeance. As he plays his pieces we wonder just who will be sacrificed, and who will have the chance to live happily ever after in this dark world of Dumas.

    Readers of more modern novels may have trouble with this book because of the sheer volume of concurrent story lines, all of which are necessary for understanding the strings being pulled by the Count. But to remember the tale of the lovers, the orphan, the bandit, the banker, the ship builder, the assassin, the count, the princess, the steward, the military man, the lawyer, the cheating husband and wife, the lost love, the musician, the buried baby, the dying father, the paralyzed grandfather, the murderess, the thief, the countess, the emperor and all of their relations, can be quite a daunting task for any reader. Still each of these stories could be a book of their own, keeping the reader quite entertained, but Dumas has managed to weave them all together into one, brilliant and shining tale... if you can keep them straight through the end.

    What surprised me most was the ending of this story. It was not what I wanted, or hoped for. True I loved Haidee, and wanted nothing but her happiness... but many seemed to be left in suffering that did not deserve the fate that they were bound to. I will not elaborate for fear of spoiling the ending... but this does not end on a Hollywood, "they all ride off into the sunset" ending. Perhaps the meaning of the story is not all about revenge, but rather what damage the hunt for vengeance can bring to not just those who have wronged you, but to all those that surround you. The downfall of selfishness; be it falsely imprisoning someone to gain what you may, to the selfishness of vengeance... there is so much meaning in this book, I can see why it is so often "required reading." Though I highly recommend this book, I would advise you attempt to read it with others either in a class or a reading group so that you can discuss all of the rich meaning behind Dumas's words.
    ...more info
  • the best book I ever read
    you must read this bokk, je vous conseille de lire en fran?ais, c est beaucoup mieux.
    The story is great, there is a lot of suspence and action. It's not boring because there isn't a lot descrptions. You learn alot of things because there is a lot of history : the french one, italian greek spanish....
    So read it!!!!
    Vive alexandre dumas, le meilleur ¨¦crivain!!!...more info
  • The Count of Monte Cristo
    I bought this book for one of my children for a summer reading project. I needed a specific version and was glad I could search Amazon by ISBN. The book arrived quickly and the price was reasonable. I'm sure other family members will enjoy the book when the projcet is complete. ...more info
  • It is the Thrill Hammer of French fiction
    I don't know if I read this exact edition since there are other translations. I read the one with the cliff on the front of it. So, poke around and find that edition. I think it was the Penquin classic.
    In any case, here are a few reasons why you should by and read this book:
    It's got everyting in it, imprisionment, big crazy love, nasty people and thrills a go-go.
    Never mind the fact that the book is very thick and makes you look smart.

    It's basically a soap opera with a French accent. Like the whole General Hospital Luke and Laura except slightly diffferent.
    This is a big story and you will find it hard to put it down once you get all the pieces in motion.

    So, read it. If you hate it, throw the book at someone you dislike. You're sure to do some damage....more info
  • A literary masterpiece....
    This is a story that must be read to be truly appreciated.

    Set at a time of political turmoil in France, with Napoleon in exile,Edmond Dantes is an ambitious young sailor with prospects, and a beautiful fiance, Mercedes. Three people conspire against him to ruin his life, one wants his girl, another his position. He is banished to the notorious Chateau d'If, and is believed by his friends to be dead.

    In prison he meets the Abbe Faria, who becomes his teacher, and together they plan to escape. Edmond escapes with a treasure map 14 years later, claims the fortune, and becomes the mysterious Count of Monte Cristo, bent on getting revenge against those who wronged him. With his new found fortune he effortlessly penetrates the highest levels of society, and unrecognisable to his enemies, he now befriends them.

    The revenge comes slow and sweet, as he plots the downfall of his enemies. He is ruthless, deliberate and unrelenting, and appears to know everyones dark secrets, although we don't always know how he knows.

    There are many sub characters and subplots that are not in the movie versions of the story. There are some genuinely good characters whose path to love is blocked, and he is in the background pulling the strings to work the situation for those he loves. He is also pulling the strings on those he is out to get.

    He refers to himself as providence, as he takes the archetype role of flawed hero avenger, and wreaks his awful vengeance. He mysteriously appears everywhere, and knows everything, and uses it. He is karma incarnate.

    The society and manners of the time are brilliantly evoked by the beautiful writing of Alexandre Dumas. As the words leap from the page into your imagination, you see the characters, you hear their words, and feel their emotions.

    Most of all, you feel for Edmond Dantes. Will revenge bring him some measure of satisfaction, and make him happy? Or, will he be forever unable to forgive, and be happy. In some respects his life is our life, as you hope for some measure
    of transformation in his experience that you can apply to your own.

    Will he reunite with his beautiful fiance, now married to one of his enemies? Can he get revenge, and be forgiven by her?

    This is a story to be savored. So, go for the unabridged version.

    If you have seen the original movie with Robert Donat, and the more recent one with Jim Caviezel, who subsequently went on to play the contrasting role of Jesus Christ, I love both of the movie versions.

    There is way more in the book than can be conveyed in a two hour movie, and so the story is condensed and some of the characters altered to make the story more movie friendly. So, if you are like me, and enjoyed the movie, you will love the book.

    I hope you find this review helpful, and, if you do, please click yes.
    ...more info
  • A truly remarkable work!
    This is one of the best books ever written. The characterizations are remarkable. Certainly a "must-have" for anyone who likes to read. It is a long book, but the richness of the text will more than compensate you for the time spent reading.
    The characters all comport themselves with a dignity and nobility that cannot be seen or portrayed by people of our time period. It is as though all of the characters have the distinction of Anthony Hopkins(and this still does not do it justice!). This work is a feast for the mind!...more info
  • A Revolutionary Story
    Alexandre Dumas truly surpassed himself with the publication of The Count of Monte Cristo. The gripping beginning is full of mistrust and betrayal, as the main character Edmond Dates, is imprisoned as a result of his supposed friends. The story covers the turbulent years of his imprisonment, starting with depression and thoughts of suicide, followed by years of being educated and developed. After his phenomenal escape from prison, Dantes sets out on a journey to seek fortune and revenge himself. Years of tragic, surprising, and dynamic events follow, in which Dantes is exposed to old "friends" and even an ex-lover. The plot thickens as infidelity, bankruptcy, danger, and astonishment are incorporated into the scheme. The story ends the way it begins, full of love, and adoration.
    The Count of Monte Cristo is beautifully written, and truly a story that intrigues you the moment you pick it up. Its fast-paced plot line is full of revenge, love, and lying. The length, although extensive, is irrelevant, because the story that the many pages tells is revolutionary, and truly inspiring....more info
  • The best plot in literary history.
    Enough good things can't be said of this book. It is rightly considered Dumas' masterpiece. The story in a sentence is how a man named Dantes is falsely accused and imprisoned thanks to the machinations of his treacherous enemies, escapes jail, comes across a fortune and spends many a year spinning a sweet, sweet revenge on all.

    Of course the brilliance of the novel can't be described. It truly is great in its descriptions of the machinations and the motivations of the characters, as well as its insight into the human condition, second to few. Just because a book was published serially as popular fiction doesn't make it less worthwhile than the most pompous novel. The book explores the moral justification of Dantes in his revenge.

    This is a work where the hundreds of details come together (nothing being told for no reason) to pack a powerful punch. As such, no abridged version will ever do. It's long but it's a good read and worthwhile. A must....more info

  • One of the greatest books ever
    The Count of Monte Cristo has to be one of my favorite novels. It's full of intricate plot twists, fascinating characters, romance, revenge, hope, despair, deception, betrayal, redemption and all the other emotions and experiences that make up life. All of the characters are multi-layered, no one, not even Edmund Dantes (aka the Count) acting out of easily-defined motives, and are intertwined in such beautifully complex ways with terrific backstories. Edmund takes revenge on these horrible people who ruined his life and took his fiance and future away from him, but one still feels a little sorry for them, because they're real characters. All in all, a fantastic book that really delves into the psyche of revenge. It's quite long, but it's worth it because it is so intricate and detailed and so beautiful....more info
  • Dish of Revenge, served Piping Cold
    Parisian bon vivant, drinker, womanizer and genius Alexandre Dumas has, in "The Count of Montecristo", given the world one of the greatest stories ever told.

    It is a marvel of literary invention. Its literary scope and scale and historical sweep is nothing short of revolutionary, and for all of its grandeur and jaw-dropping perspective, it is unfailingly intimate, brutally so.

    "The Count of Montecristo" is the story of young Edmond Dantes, a French sailor aboard the merchant-vessel Pharaon in 1815, who returns to the port of Marseilles with the glorious Catalan girl Mercedes waiting to be his bride, and with a promising future as the captain of the merchantman ahead of him.

    Or so he thinks: for there is no poison so bitter, so brutal, or so deadly as envy. And as Old Scratch slithered forth as a serpent to poison even earthly paradise, so too Dantes is stalked by an envious trio of the sort that put Caesar in an early grave: the bitter and calculating Danglars, supercargo of the Pharaon; Danglars's drinking buddy Caderousse; and Mercedes's cousin Fernand, hopelessly in love with his cousin and aghast at her impending marriage to Dantes.

    It is 1815; a time of shaky stability for France and Europe. The Ogre of Corsica has just been put down, exiled to Elba---but Bonapartist clubs assassinate Royalist generals in the capital, and the alleys of Marseilles are rife with whispers of Napoleon's return.

    It is into this poisonous, heated, feverish atmosphere that this trio of serpents work their vindictive magic, and with the flick of a plume the happy Dantes, on the very day of his wedding and at his nuptial feast, finds himself surrounded by soldiers, held at bayonet point, and hauled before the implacable gaze of Justice. And fatality!---Justice consigns him to the wretched dungeons of the Chateau D'If, a heartless, impregnable rock off the coast of France---for the rest of his life.

    To say anything more would be to give far too much away, but know this: "The Count of Montecristo" is both black book of revenge and horror tale: a consumptively engaging story of double Betrayal, Death, and Despair: a Man consigned to death and rot by his supposed friends and colleagues, buried beneath the Earth in a great black tomb, forgotten by his best beloved, lost to everything, left for the teeth of rat and Time.

    And it is also a tale of Resurrection---and Revenge.

    You'll want to get a copy of the unabridged version; Random House's The Modern Library edition (published in 1996) is a fine choice, and just so you can check (be warned: the shelves are full of sliced and diced pretenders) the unexpurgated version clocks in at a hefty 1462 pages. That means once you're through with it, you can use it to forestall a burglary or brain an assassin.

    Never have 1500 pages moved so swiftly and deftly. A rumor, bandied around the streets of Paris in Dumas's day which resurfaced in Perez y Reverte's mesmerizing "Club Dumas", is that the jolly-faced Dumas signed a blood-contract with Satan, and in return for his soul he was given a diabolic gift to be prolific.

    Diabolic or Angelic, there is no doubt that Dumas is pure genius: you marvel at the simultaneous breadth and depth and intimacy of "Count of Montecristo". There is no padding here; not one sentence is superfluous and every word tells. A paragraph sliced away here, a sentence taken out there, and the perfect, brutal, logical, coldly calculating structure would fall apart.

    In the meantime, the reader is introduced to some of the most fascinating and memorable characters in history: the tragic, beautiful Mercedes; her dandyish son Albert; her husband, the stiff and martial Count Fernand de Mortcerf. We see, in his middle age, the ever-calculating banker Danglars and his miserable family, including the boyish, driven, devious and ultimately foolish Eugenie; the Prosecutor of the King, Villefort, and his fascinating family: the hopelessly innocent Valentine, the paralyzed, rabid old Jacobin M. de Noirtier, and the Prosector's young---and tragically greedy---trophy wife.

    Beyond these characters, "Count of Montecristo" gives us even more, taking us deep into the lives of France's Rich & Famous---and villainous! We come face to face with the Old Ogre of Corsica himself, Napoleon Bonaparte. We pass the time in Latin and philosophy with the foppish, foolish, overly confident King Louis XVIII, who would rather count the angels on the head of a pin than martial his troops against the lively spectre of Bonapartism.

    And I have but scratched the surface: this story is the very essence, the pure, undiluted blood, of swashbuckling fantasy. Here we have pirates and Roman brigands, the famous Italian banditti Luigi Vampa, stories within stories within stories, buried treasure on a deserted volcanic island rising up over the waves of the Tyrrhennian sea. We have mad monks, and midnight assignations, and foundlings and changelings and villainous [...] sons appearing out of the blue. We have plots, and poisonings, and murder, and villainy, and great heroism; we have connections to the marvellous, tragic downfall of the great Abyssinian hero Ali Pasha.

    In short, we have a marvellous witch's brew of high treason and infamy, a Devil's Codex of revenge, retribution, and absolution. My flimsy prose is not worthy to provide adequate praise to this masterpiece: get a copy, close the curtains, have a bottle of your finest chianti at the ready, smoke some Montecristo cigars if you're a smoker (you should know that these, the finest the Dominican Republic offers, were inspired by this tale), turn off all the phones in the house---and transport yourself to a tale of betrayal, death, resurrection, villainy and revenge---served Piping Cold.

    ...more info
  • An obsession with revenge
    This is a classic tale, and it would be hard to add much to other reviews. It is the story of Edmund Dantes, falsely accused and sent to prison. While in prison, he learns about a valuable treasure. Contriving to escape, he recovers the treasure and sets himself up with a new identity as a wealthy nobleman. While many people would have enjoyed their wealth, Edmund is obsessed with revenge against the people responsible for sending him to prison. He is willing to destroy not only those people, but also their families. Money can buy a lot, and he expends large amounts of his new found wealth on elaborate schemes to ruin the people. Down deep, he is actually not a nice person, and you do not want to get on his wrong side. He holds grudges and pays people back in spades....more info
  • A great book
    You see all these reviews on this site of highschool kids says 'SOO BOORING' but these are obviously immature lazy students, who cant appreciate a great book. Im a freshman in highschool and this book was great! I didn't read it for school, i did on my own accord and loved it. Don't bother with the movie, it left so much out, and it isnt a quarter as good....more info
  • Who is the count?
    The count of Monte Cristo is actually based on a real life character, The Jesuit General. When you read the book in parallel with the Jesuit order all becomes apparent. The Jesuit General is the guy behind the scenes of the Vatican church....more info
    This is my favourite book and I have to say i saw the movie three times and I even wen through a hassal and rented the older version of it. I gotta tell u it will only ruin the experience for you. The book has by my opinion the most touching writing and the most realistic dialogues. I love it. I wont give a plot summary or anything, unlike most of the people here but I just want to say that whoever says this book is trash and such, never even read the book or disliked the movie. Dont listen to those people.
    As to this quote "Down deep, he is actually not a nice person, and you do not want to get on his wrong side." I am gonna have to disagree a little bit. Yes once you move on further into the book where his revange is already in motion he seems like a very mean person. I was fooled by it also, but he was in the forsaken jail for 14 years. You can't get out the same person you went in. But once he already avanges them he actualy forgives them. He saves valentine for maximilian and he even feels sorry for the revange on vielfort. It's not the easiest book to read yet its the best by my opinion.

    Read this book!!!!!!!!!! Dumas is the best!!!!!!!...more info

  • Great copy of unabridged Count of Monte Cristo
    We only recently found out that all our copies of The Count of Monte Cristo were abridged. We checked this out of our local library and liked it so much we bought a copy for our home library. The type setting is very readable and best of all, it's not abridged.

    The story is a classic and a great read. I recommend it for everyone....more info
  • Great Storytelling at its best
    I chanced upon "The Count of Monte Cristo" when my daughter needed to read it as part of a summer reading program. I am not a big reader of fiction and the story line of the book didnt inspire a lot of confidence. A story of a man who is unjustly imprisoned who comes back and avenges his enemies -- doesn't sound too interesting.

    Anyway, I just started reading a few pages just for the heck of it and found that I couldn't put the book down. This was story-telling at its best. It took me a couple of days to finish the book -- I really did nothing else during that period. The book was so well written -- and well translated.

    There are a whole bunch of characters in the story and their stories weave in and out of each other sustaining the pace of the novel. In some ways, this book seemed to be like a collection of novels (or novellas) that somehow got intertwined into a coherent large novel. Some of the things in the story might seem remarkable and hard to believe -- but that doesnt detract from the craftsmanship of Dumas which is quite unlike anything I have read thus far.

    There are a lot of abridged editions floating around -- however, after reading the original unabridged translation, I think its not possible to abridge the story without taking away significantly from its greatness. ...more info
  • Page Turner
    We bought this book for my son's required reading in school, but my husband and I also read it on his recommendation. Our son is only 14 and he loved the book, and he is NOT a big reader. Even though the book is over 500 pages, he couldn't put the book down, nor could we....more info
  • Couldn't put it down.
    I have just returned to the land of the living, having hidden from the world to read all 1276 pages of "The Count of Monte Cristo" in just under five days. It is definitely my favorite book now, beating out one that has been my top since I was a teenager. You know how you can get through a book, love it, and also be sorry that it's done? Well, with a book of this length, it's as if you read five books that you don't want to end. You get the complete story. Nothing is left out that should have been said. Sheer perfection....more info
  • Some Classics really are classic
    Sometimes books are listed as Classics, and you have no idea why. English teachers are an odd lot as a whole, and I guess they're the ones who more or less determine what is considered classic. Some are clear choices, however, and to me "The Count of Monte Cristo" falls into that category.
    To begin with it is immensely readable, a point of necessity often overlooked on modern lists. It is a page-turner of the highest order, with romance and intrigue, suspense and drama, and as complicated a morality play of revenge and justice as one could desire. And the reader isn't harmed by a decent dose of French history in the process. There was an old movie version, with Tony Curtis of all people as the Count, that was amazingly true to such a long and complicated story. The more recent movie was forgettable, and if you don't recall it don't feel bad.
    Back to the story. It is well worth the reading, or re-reading, and personally I enjoyed it far more even than the Three Musketeers. It starts a little slowly, but if you stay with it through the point of Dante's (the Count) imprisonment, you'll be rewarded with a story you can't put down.
    ...more info
  • The Count of Monte Cristo
    Do you want to read an exciting book? Then the Count of Monte Cristo is the book for you. The Count of Monte Cristo is a very good book. It is a fiction adventure book about a man named Edmond Dantes who lived in Marseilles in the 1800s. In it Edmond is accused of being a Bonaparist and had to go to jail for fourteen years until he ecscapes and bec omes wealthy. He then set out for revenge. I like this book because it is very exciting and has lots of details that a lot of other authors would have kept out. I also like it because it is told in lots of points of view. Like one moment it is telling about Edmond and the other it is telling about Albert and Mercedes {characters in the book}. I recommend this book because it is very thrilling and ends in a wasy that makes you want to know what happens to all the characters in it. ...more info
  • Couldn't Get Better!
    I just finished reading The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. I just could never put this book down. At night I refused to go to sleep, and when I finally did, I'd dream about the brilliant Count of Monte Cristo and the elegant Paris society that's inwardly so corrupted.

    Dumas is an author of a rare quality. Through Dante, he depicts the most exciting story of love, friendship, adventure, justice, and drama. From the very beginning to the last page, I was always curious and dying to know what was going to happen on the next page.

    Edmond Dante is a young man who is a good and innocent son, fiance, and a sailor. He is being envied by his collegues and, on his wedding day, gets arrested and later put in the most infamous prison for no good reason. After many many years Dante escapes the Chateau d'If miraculously and makes perfect plans to get revenge on his enenmies. It's fascinating to find out what a genius he is at fulfilling his heart's desires.

    It really is a masterpiece and would like to recommend it to everyone because it's impossible not to enjoy this book throughly. Just be careful NOT to read the abridged version since it leaves out too many details....more info

  • The Count of Monte Cristo
    I boutht this for my Grandson freshman class in World History. He enjoyed the book and recieved a good grade on his report...more info
  • Hard to put down
    Occasionally departs from believability, but overall, an engaging, adventure packed story of a man (Edmond Dantes), his unjust imprisonment, and spectacular revenge....more info
  • Worth the length!
    When I received The Count of Monte Cristo, unabridged, for my 16th birthday, I thought to myself, "Yeah right. This is over 1400 pages! I'll never get around to reading it!" Although an avid reader already, I was not prepared for this amazing work of art. My friend and I read it over the summer, and we both say it is the singular greatest book we have ever read! We agree that Alexandre Dumas must have been a genius to be able to think of such an intricate, fascinating plot. The characters are believable, moving me to tears at times and laughter at others. I recommended this book to all my friends and family, and to all people who love reading a good story as much as I do. ...more info
  • Excelent story, short version
    The book is excelent reading but please get a different version.
    This version only has 580 or so pages where as other versions have over 1,300 pages. That means that this version is only half the story.
    So much gets lost in translation already don't cheat yourself even more....more info
  • Great copy of unabridged Count of Monte Cristo
    We only recently found out that all our copies of The Count of Monte Cristo were abridged. We checked this out of our local library and liked it so much we bought a copy for our home library. The type setting is very readable and best of all, it's not abridged.

    The story is a classic and a great read. I recommend it for everyone....more info
  • The 2nd best book ever!
    except for the Bible, this is the best.
    It is the full and undiluted version from the first english translation.
    read it, learn it,live it.
    j...more info
  • Fabulous, Amazing, a Work of Art
    This was the first book I have read by Alexandre Dumas, and I have to say I loved it. The size is rather intimidating, but it is completely worth it. Despite the large size, I decided to read it, and I could not put it down. You know, I had those late nights where you just stay up and read for hours.

    The story begins with Edmond Dantes arriving home off his ship to marry his beloved Mercedes. The novel dives right into action with a plot made up by his "friends" to ruin him for some gain of their own. Edmond is falsely accused of being a Bonapartist involved in a scheme to overthrow the King and gets arrested right during his betrothal feast, and is thrown into prison. Right when he begins to give up hope, he befriends a very intelligent, old Abbe, who helps Edmond escape. The novel continues many years later with Edmond, or rather, the Count of Monte Cristo, and his brilliant, conniving plot of revenge.

    "The Count of Monte Cristo" is a tale of adventure-yes, it is a tale of love-yes, but what this novel truly is, is a tale of revenge. How one's past haunts them because of one's wrongdoings and losses. But also how revenge cannot fix everything. Things in life do not usually work out perfectly, but there is always hope.

    This is a book full of twists and turns and those "Oh! What happens next!? I want to know!" moments. I can't wait to read more of Dumas' books. He's a gifted writer- able to write a thrilling plot and portray realistic characters and their true feelings. If you're a sucker for good literature, like myself, this is the book to read. Enjoy!...more info
  • Very disappointing
    Although the story is well known to me, the editing of this audio book was so confusing. I absolutely could not follow it. Too much is cut out....more info
  • Available Free Elsewhere
    This book is long out of copyright and so is available free for your Kindle elsewhere on the net.

    (Great book though!)...more info
  • Definetly a Classic
    Look, if you've seen the movie, it's a good adaptation, yet, as often with movies, it is diminished when compared to the book. THis is even more so with Monte Cristo, the book is quite long, but filled with intrigue, if you think Dantes could be cruel on the film, just read the book. Also, it has a less corny ending, which I appreciate.
    Truth, the book is quite long, but it is completely absorbing, I just couldn't put it down, I finished it on 12 hours of straight non stop reading, just couldn't stop until the end. I most definetly recommend this book, and would consider it as a Must read for anyone who claims to be at least moderately knowledgeable....more info
  • Now I know why it's a classic
    I've often heard of references to this book, but never had an occasion to read it. After reading "Lone Survivor", I was curious to read "The Count of Monte Cristo". Dumas certainly set the bar high for all those to follow in this genre. The intrigue and twists are exceptional. A classic which should be a "must read"....more info
  • an exciting tale of revenge
    this book is awesome. Its a little complicated because of all of the characters and the past crimes they have commited but in the end the characters all tie together in weird twists of fate. You'll enjoy every one. The book is so different from the movie. Way better!! It goes into more detail and depth....more info
  • Favorite Book
    The first time I read this book I was a sophmore in high school. Since then, I have reread it at least a dozen more times. This has to be the best book ever written. I would recommend this book to anyone. ...more info
  • The Count of Monte Cristo
    Edmond Dantes seems to have it all. He is engaged to a beautiful woman, and was just named captain of a ship. When three jealous friends conspire against him, he loses everything, and is locked away forever in the Chateau d'If. There Dantes learnes of an island with vast treasure, and plans his escape. Now, as the Count of Monte Cristo, Dantes, armed with vast wealth, seeks his enemies. Now nothing can stand in his way between him and his goal......revenge.
    This book is great for people who like a good book.
    ...more info
  • Count of Monte Cristo
    Story has good twists, but there are too many French places and people which makes the audio confusing....more info
  • GREAT READ!!!!!
    I wish i hadn't read this book, so i could do it again for the first time. a thrilling, suspensful, satisfying, swashbuckling story - a great read!! ...more info
  • A Must Read!
    This is honestly one of the greatest novels I have ever read. I absolutely loved this book. I could not put it down! This is a must read for anyone.When I first started into this novel, I had in my memory the 'movie' that was made for the big screen. So of course, I expected the book to be very similar to it. Well, I was very wrong! Other than Edmond Dantes being betrayed by his 'friends' and finding the treasure, this book takes on a different route.
    Believe me, the book is much more superb. The way the Count exacts his revenge is astonishing. I cannot fathom how Dumas came up with such a scheme. At times, one cringes for the those who wronged the Count.

    This book made me laugh and cry. There are many poignant moments throughout the book that make you feel good. Anyone who says that Dumas is not up there with the 'classic' writers, does not know what they are talking about. This book is rich in dialogue, mystery, suspense and storyline. All in all, this is an amazing classic, and I recommend it to anyone wanting a good read....more info

  • One of my all-time favorites!
    I read this book about 20 years ago and it left a big impression on me. Edmund Dantes, framed for a crime he didn't commit goes to an island prison to rot. There he meets an elderly man who quickly becomes his teacher. The man seems to know everything and his lessons transform Dantes into a sophisticated and wiley-intelligent individual.

    The two plan Dantes escape (I don't want to give away how but it has to do with the old man's death) and when Dantes, ultimately does escape he reinvents himself as a mysterious Count and starts taking revenge on those who framed him.

    This book made me appreciate the value of learning and how you can make yourself a better person, no matter your station in life, if you take advantage of books and other sources of information available....more info

  • My Favorite Book
    The Count of Monte Cristo is my favorite book of all time. I read the abridged version in Jr. High and named it #1. I picked up the unabridged version of my own accord in college and fell in love all over again. I will read it again and again. Please read the full story of Edmond Dantes. You will thank yourself... ...more info
  • So Sorry I Haven't Read This Sooner!
    NOTE: I really hate that Amazon includes reviews from several editions of the same book under one heading. Some editions are abridged for this novel, and that truly is an injustice and the reviews show that. The Oxford Classics version - which I read - is an UNABRIDGED version, and my review is based on that.

    This story revolves around Edmond Dantes, a young man who seemingly has everything going for him. His employer has much regard for him and is about to put him as captain of his own ship, he is about to marry the woman he loves, all is right in Dantes world. Unfortunately, this type of happiness and success breeds jealousy and envy, and Dantes finds himselft falsely accused and imprisoned. He does escape, and therein the true tale begins.

    The story weaves back and forth and entangles lives - but central is the thirst for revenge. Dumas certainly has a way of telling a story, even a long one, and keeping it interesting a fresh. There are twists and turns and an entire host of interesting characters. One moment I found myself cheering for Dantes and the next I was hoping he wouldn't do what I thought he would. However, one can never be too sure of what might happen next or where the story might go.

    I had put off reading this novel because of the length for so long, and I now regret having done that. Although the tale of revenge is an old one, Dumas has managed to weave a story filled with mystery, adventure, and excitement with just a touch of romance - what more could a reader possibly want?...more info
  • Character and Plot Infuses into the Reader's Own Life
    I just finished this book this morning, and, as any good book should, it moved me to tears (and not for the first time). Of course, this made me look a little strange when I showed up at work.

    When taking on a book of this size that is this good (and therein lies the catch), it becomes a part of your life. Some of the characters will remind you of people you know and bring them more to life, but already Dumas' characters are so lifelike and incredibly, amazingly real, and that with each chapter you have spent that much more time with them, learning something new about them (up to the very last chapter!), the story literally becomes a memory that you will be fond of looking back on.

    It is interesting to note that this translation is from an anonymous person. I had several issues with the translation unfortunately. I feel it was completed by at least two people, and I believe one can tell (in the first half of the book) because the chapters are clumped together in specific styles. It probably won't affect many readers, but I noticed it and thought I should point it out. This edition, unfortunately, has typos! Beware, that though they are sparse, they are blatant. This saddens me when I see a beautiful edition slighted by the hands of lazy-eyed editors. (I expect no less for modern authors!)

    I have waited years to read this. I would have loved to have read this when I was younger, but a lot of it would have gone in one eye, out the other (so to speak).

    Enjoy, and let the story take you away from this life for awhile....more info
  • Worth the effort
    I found the thought of reading this book rather intimidating as it's 1077 pages long. Once reading however, it was compulsive enough to be worth the effort (I'm a slow reader). It holds an extremely clever plot which hooked me and made me admire the author and the book but...never quite managed to make me really believe in the Count as a man; this Godlike being formerly a young sailor, wrongly imprisoned, educated by a fellow-lag into this all-knowing, manipulative and omnipotent (but sentient) creation. I had to will the suspension of disbelief and managed it just enough to enjoy the book. I liked, or rather agreed with, the idealistic themes, the lack of truly good and bad main characters - the four of Dantes targets are all very human. Some of the secondary characters seemed too good to be true though but more depth to them may have resulted in a further few hundred pages!
    Taken less seriously, if you just want to enjoy a book, it's a compulsive, fun read with not too many frustratingly long-drawn out parts- though there are some.
    ...more info
  • This is NOT the Modern Library edition for kindle ...
    This is a must reading for any reading lover. It easily ranks among the best 20 novels ever in any language. Just one piece of useful information for kindle users. This is NOT the Modern Library edition. I downloaded the free sample from my kindle and I am glad I did. This is a mobile 'cheap' edition with the text only that I can get for free some place else. Amazon should be careful in listing books, because not all editions are the same. If this was the Modern Library edition, I would happily pay the $0.99 they are asking for....more info
  • Dumas's True Masterpiece
    The Count of Monte Cristo is the quitessential Dumas novel. This book is his own creation, not one which his factory of writers wrote and he flourished and embellished. He found a story about a cobbler who after being imprisoned by presumed friends brutally murdered them all. Dumas entrigued by this occurence proceeded to write a glorified version of it. The book provides the tense atmosphere of France during the Napoleonic Era, the political dealings and believable characters. From the most vile villain to the Count everyone seems human and flawed. Dumas has created a world in which one can easily delve into and be absorbed. This work is truly worth reading!!

    P.S. Do not be daunted by the length- after the first 50 pages or so the story truly moves!...more info

  • Amazing book.
    This is one of those elite pieces of art that will change your life. Don't ever see the movie, it can not even begin to explain the amount of pain he experiences, or the amount of revenge he inflicts. I love this book....more info
  • Why Every One Of The 1500 Pages Is Worth Reading
    Some time back, a friend recommended that I read this book. I am very glad that I have that friend. This book is perhaps the best I have ever read, and I have read A LOT of books.
    While an extraordinarily long book, I never found myself putting it down unless I had to. It is classic example of a book with every good literary element without unrealistic plots, characters, and events. Everything that happens is plausible (except maybe the Count's money).
    However, the book can be difficult to understand. I would advise rereading over what you have already covered, or just skimming over the pages you already read. Also, it wouldn't be a bad idea to take notes on who is who and what is happening, because it can get very confusing.
    Overall, if you want to read a really good novel, this is your best bet. It has something to satisfy everyone, from action to romance to revenge. Not only that, but all of these elements are cleverly woven together in such a way that everything from earlier on comes back to be of vast significance in the later parts of the book, etc. This work is nothing short of spectacular, so get reading!
    ...more info
  • pioneering psychological thriller
    This massive book has all the hallmarks of what you would expect in a classic: intriguing characters with great psychological depth as they evolve over a long period of time, an extraordinarily intricate plot of adventure and tranformation, and moral lessons along with rich ironies. So long as you embrace the complexity and can live in another world, the full version is utterly rivetting to read.

    Everyone knows the plot in outline. A gifted and yet simple sailor, Dantes, is the victim of a conspiracy involving thwarted love, greed, and unbridled ambition. By eliminating him, three men get what they want and move brilliantly into the rapidly changing and corrupt French society. They forget Dantes, who is isolated in despair in a notorious political dungeon, the Chateau d'If. While in prison, he meets an Italian savant who tunnels into his room and who teaches him the entire pantheon of classical knowledge, which he memorised as a tutor to princes; he also harbors a secret about an immense treasure on the island of Monte Cristo. Dantes escapes, finds the treasaure, and sets about creating an elaborate series of traps to wreak vengence on the three men who condemned him. This occurs in about the 1st 250 pages of the book. At this point, after doing some good for a family that had tried to help him, Dantes' interior dialogue - so vivid as he figures out who betrayed him and learns to hate them while learning the love the Italian savant as a 2nd father - becomes silent to the reader. What Dantes then does is insinuate himelf into French high society, creating relationships with the 3 men and their families with a cunning that can only be called genius. This takes place over about 700 pages and is an indictment of the society that Dumas despised. Though the Count is falling in love, his hatred is so implacable and cold as to render him an automaton of vengence. Then, in the last 3rd of the book as the train of destruction he created is set in motion, Dantes is again reborn as a man who can feel and reflect on what he has done. It is a moving apotheosis of redemption and regret.

    What is so amazing about the story is that, as outlandish as some of the plot twists and coincidences are, the reader is (or at least I was) swept into a fast-moving narrative that is irresistably readable. In doing so, Dumas helped to spawn an entirely new genre of novel: the psychological thriller, or adventure that provokes reflection and awe. Its depth is beyond a simple swashbuckler. Its world is complete in sumptuous and realistic detail while remaining too fantastic to believe. Its characters are so complex and yet such romantic ideals as they evolve. Moreover, there are also a number of symbols throughout the book, evoking Christian and pagan themes, so that the book can be interpreted on a number of levels.

    This is one of the best novels I ever read and certainly Dumas' best. Though it took me an entire summer to get through it, I will never forget it. For those of you who read French, Dumas' language is stunningly clear and graceful, while using a vocabulary that is easily accessible. Highest recommendation....more info

  • the batman of its day
    Just a great book. I like this better than The 3 Musketeers.
    Edmund Dantes, wronged by a rival and sent to prison on trumped up charges, escapes, "inherits" a treasure, and then... plots his revenge.
    Get the unedited version. Yeah, it's about 1300 pages, but it goes by quickly. Dumas was a master of the page turner. He put the "swash" in swashbuckler!...more info
  • The Peak of Storytelling
    Most people are in awe of the "classic." However, a book does not pick that title on the whim of a professor of arcane texts, rather a book gains such when it constantly and consistently speaks about the human condition. Classics do not only thrill and teach, they also live.
    The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas is a classic.
    This tale of accusal, love, betrayal, imprisonment, redemption, and retribution, defies genre.
    Recounting the plot serves no purpose, so I will simply surmise that most readers focus on vengeance at the expense of reward. Edmond Dantes could not have desired living just to kill those who wronged him; he expected to return to those who remained faithful. Here Dumas, using Dantes, Sinbad, Albert and Abbe Busoni, championed a nonviolent stoicism which exposes a person to death to experience life.
    The Count of Monte Cristo is a vivid potrayal of French life after the Revolution, an epic account of a man's quest for closure and an inspiration for the Shawshank Redemption. It is never too late to read it....more info
  • A Great story that reads quicker than it's length suggests.
    I hope the reader will forgive me, but since other reviewers did a fine job of commenting on this wonderful story, I'd like to dwell more on this books author, the great Alexandre Dumas. The man is an incredible writer who, despite the length of some of his novels, is able to entice the reader on and on and when the story ends they put down the book wishing that there was more to read. The reader by the end is won over by the enduring characters, good, bad, and in between, by the intricate and exciting plot, and by the wonderful wit of the author who is almost another character himself because of the flair of his writing.

    All I can say is that if you are the type of reader who can be scared off by the length of a novel, you should realize that Dumas' books usually move along at a wonderful pace and that everything in them is essential reading, and everything cut out of the abridged editions is a loss to the reader.

    So that being said I recommend The Count of Monte Cristo very highly, and recommend also that if you choose to read it that you are sure to get an unabridged copy. To cut out parts of this wonderful story is a crime, and a needless one considering how wonderfully told this story is....more info
  • The Count of Monte Cristo
    Reviewer:Robert LeBlanc from Carson,CA
    Mya 6,2004
    I recently read this book for my S.S.R. in my 3rd period class. This book is a middle, to high school level, with a movie, and that was about the time I initially read it. I wasn't really able to grabs the main points until, I constrated on the book. Then my awareness began to rise, giving vivid ideas why Edwin was sent to the shadow deep. And this is when the planning, learning, and revange came into play. He was in a jail where he would not get out, beated every year he was there, then something happed... A former man from Napoleans army was trying to dig his way out. So as prisners Edwin made a deal that he wil hep the man or prist get out if he teaches heim how to read, write, fight, mathamatics, and economic. Later on Edwin's friend dies from a cave in and he tels him of some riches, swich plaves with him and excapes. THen from what he learn and from the training he had revenge on the people that put him in the shadow deep, and finds out he has a son, gets his wife back, and lives like one of the riches man in the world. And looking at Edwin, only if he could read he would of knew they Naploans was diseaving him. And at the same time in the shadow deep he learn to read different languages, mathamatics, to fight, and ect. Then from the help he gave the old man, he became the riches man in the world getting revenge on those who betraid hem, Witth people with advantegers in there lives they should read this book. It gives the reader a thrill, has you constenty gessing, and makes you want to write your own book.
    The End!...more info
  • As good as it gets...
    Having never read The Count of Monte Cristo and only faintly recalling a movie of some years ago, I was prepared for a swashbuckling epic of swordplay and derring-do. My expectations were entirely inadequate. The Count of Monte Cristo is rather a tale of revenge through the artifice of intrigue and cold calculation. Dumas creates a broken man, betrayed by a trio of duplicitous schemers, and devotes the bulk of the book to the complex machinations employed in retaliation.

    The phrase "intricately detailed" does not begin to describe the plots and sub-plots which carry this classic forward. Like all novels of its period, the author relies on what the modern-day reader would consider implausible convenience. This doesn't detract from its worth. To create such a tightly-laced weave, some liberties must be granted. The reader gladly forgives Messr. Dumas.

    On par with The Brothers Karamazov, Anna Karenina, and the works of James Fenimore Cooper, The Count of Monte Cristo is wonderfully thick and magisterially constructed. Set primarily among the preening social elite of post-Napoleanic Paris, yet ranging from Rome to Normandy, it is a 5-star reading experience.
    ...more info
  • Abridged For Children
    I saw the recent movie, (The Count of Monte Cristo - 2002, staring - James Caviezel) and loved it so much, I ordered the book, and this is the version I choose. Unfortunately, this is the first book I've ever read that the movie is actually better! The abridged version is so limited it misses the very crucial points in this wonderful insightful story. If you're an adult I suggest reading an unabridged version in order to get the profound message this book addresses.

    ...more info
  • Magnificent!!!
    I believe this book is excellent, the movie is mediocre compared to the book. The theme and everything is so well written, it won't let you drop the book....more info
  • Now I know why it's a classic
    I've often heard of references to this book, but never had an occasion to read it. After reading "Lone Survivor", I was curious to read "The Count of Monte Cristo". Dumas certainly set the bar high for all those to follow in this genre. The intrigue and twists are exceptional. A classic which should be a "must read"....more info
  • This Classic is Too Much
    I read this in an unabridged edition (117 chapters, circa 1400 pages), which I don't regret. However, having plowed my way to the end, I am tempted to classify this along with "Dracula" as a "classic" novel whose reputation rests more on its great beginning than on its middle and end. It was great up to about chapter 30 (describing the betrayal, imprisonment and escape of the hero, and the reward of his friends). However, once the story starts to sink in to the prolonged revenge, it starts to lose its way for me.

    After chapter 30, the hero becomes a sort of divinely inspired madman, who imagines himself to be, and apparently is, a mere tool and agent of God's justice. His behavior transcends moral laws, his plans transcend human intelligence, and he becomes impossible to identify with as a character. Fortunately, there are plenty of other characters, and the story, from this point on, is rarely told from the mysterious Count's point of view. If you are willing to settle in and be patient, you can have some fun watching the weaving, interacting sprawling plot threads. Even so, when it was all said and done, it was wrapped up in a way that left a bad taste in my mouth.

    I would not, however, recommend reading an abridged version. Too many threads intersect, and you cannot trust an abridger to like the same parts that you will like....more info
  • Sweet and Long Overdue Revenge
    Apart from 'The Three Musketeers', this is probably Alexandre Dumas' most famous work and one of the greatest novels in Western literature: a novel every literate and educated person should read at least once in their lives.

    In this story, Edmond Dantes is an innocent man who was caught in the intrigues of Napoleon's escape from Elba and his 100 days of power until Waterloo. A sailor entrusted with a sealed letter of highest importance by his dying captain, Dantes delivers it into the hands of the evil prosecutor Villefort who, for reasons unkown to him, immediately sends him without trial or appeal to spend the rest of his days at the Chateau D'Iffe: a dark and isolated island prison presumed to be inescapable. With the help of Abbot Faria, a dying prisoner who knows the secret of a great hidden treasure on the small islet of Monte Cristo, Dantes escapes and prepares to unleash his revenge on those who did him wrong. For years he spends his time meticulously preparing his vengeful scheme against the treacherous friends and characters who left him to rot in prison for years and years. He refines his arts of disguise, alchemy, and manipulation to content himself with the ruin of his enemies.

    Unlike the adventure themes in his works such as 'The Three Musketeers', this story is a deep character study on being the victim of utmost injustice and how cruel revenge is sweet after all: how a wronged man is entitled to become the agent of divine retribution when God and mortal laws have abandoned his cause. The various themes, complex plot, profound character development, and rich prose makes this long work undoubtedly one of the greatest works of literature ever written: Dumas was without question a literary genius.

    This is a great story for people of all ages and should not be ignored by anyone who has a profound love of literature. I think this is Dumas greatest work far surpassing 'Queen Margo' 'The Three Musketeers' or 'The Corsican Brothers.'...more info
  • Simply WOW
    I thought I liked the movie, until I read the book. Now I realize the movie was pathetic, and that the filmmakers could not have been more wrong when they decided to make it a "happily ever after" kind of movie. The book ends on somewhat of a high note, and certainly gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling, but isn't exactly a feel-good book. But it's so much better that way, and more realistic. It left me feeling staggered.

    Another thing about the movie: it left out some of the best characters. Where was Haydee, Monte Cristo's slave and adopted daughter? Or Valentine and Maximilian, probably the sweetest couple in the book? I know the movie would have been more complicated if they were included, but come on.

    But enough about the movie. I can certainly see why this book is a classic. It's deeply moving, surprisingly easy to read for an old book, and has one of the most amazing fictional characters of all time in it: Monte Cristo himself. Edmond Dantes is the character every author wishes they could create. What else can I say? It's a thick one, but give this book a chance....more info
  • A great book.
    The Count of Monte Cristo is an amazing story filled with action, betrayal, romance, and vengeance. Edmond Dantes is a young sailor who has everything he needs in life. He has a wife and a large amount of money to start a family. He is betrayed by his friends and sent to the dreaded Chateau d'If, and is imprisoned for life. Edmond thinks his life is over, so he swears vengeance to all who betrayed him. Edmond makes a miraculous escape and puts his plans into motion. He is determined to gain vengeance and nothing thrown in his way will stop him. He adopts the name Count of Monte Cristo and becomes friends with the ones who betrayed him. He gains his vengeance slowly by revealing little secrets about each of them, while revealing nothing at all about him. This is a story of a man who was wrongfully accused, and was able to escape and return the favor to his friends. The Count of Monte Cristo is an amazing book by Alexandre Dumas, and it is also one of his best....more info
  • Clever plot, enjoyable complexity.
    Loved it, and when it was over, I wished it wasn't. While some call it "verbose", I would disagree, saying that they probably did not catch the full plot, and were not reading the book, but skimming though 1400+ pages with negative feelings already in mind....more info
  • No one word to describe
    Awesome. Fabulous. Excellent. Great. Supurb. Brilliant. Exceptional. I could go one forever. This is, by far, the best book I have ever read. It was so good that I read all but two chapters in 2 days. It took me over a week to finish the last two because I didn't want the book to ever end, and in fact, I cried when I finished! This is an outstanding book that grabs you and pulls you right into the scence, so much that it feels as if you are there, smelling the salty sea and the bitter sweet revenge. I'd give it 100 stars if I could!...more info