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The Count of Monte Cristo

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas is the classic novel of a wronged man seeking revenge. Edmond Dantes is an up-and-coming sailor who is falsely accused to be conspiring against the crown. Four men are responsible for his arrest and sentence. He escapes his prison after several years and afterwards starts plotting his revenge against the four men who took away his life.

This is one of the classics and while it is still fascinating to read I still found myself taking 6 months to read it. The book starts quite brightly and is paced really well for me. Where it starts to unravel for me is when Dantes escapes prison. After this point the progress of the novel grinds to a halt and very few things seem to happen.

Being that this is the first time I have read a novel like this with numerous subplots and characters I must admit that this plays into the rating as well. If you’re not used to novels with many characters be prepared to draw out diagrams just to keep track of who’s related to who.

I actually liked the story. I liked the setting, the entire treatment of the dark sides of a human and how ambition can lead you astray. I even liked how the novel turns from being focused on Edmond Dantes and onto the four men who condemned him. What I really disliked was the pacing which just made it so difficult for me to read it.

I would recommend this book for people who like epics, classics, multi-character novels. It may even be alright for beginners like me in the art of reading these complex novels. Don’t read this if you’re not patient enough though.

3 out of 5 stars.