Dashing young Edmond Dantès has everything: a fine reputation, an appointment as captain of a ship, and the heart of a beautiful woman. But his perfect life is shattered when three jealous friends conspire to destroy him. Falsely accused of a political crime, Dantès is locked away for life in the infamous Chateau d'If prison. But it is there that Dantès learns of a vast hidden treasure. After 14 years of hopeless imprisonment, Dantès makes his daring escape and follows his secret map to untold fortune. Disguised now as the mysterious and powerful Count of Monte Cristo, Dantès seeks out his enemies - and nothing will stand in the way of his just revenge.
Filled with thrilling episodes of betrayal, romance, and revenge, The Count of Monte Cristo is one of the greatest adventure stories ever written.
(P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Having read The Count of Monte Cristo many times, I was skeptical that an audio book with only one narrator would be able to capture the book's depth and subtlety entirely. I assure anyone thinking of buying this version that the audio book delivers well beyond expectations. While the narrator is not always consistent with his intonation for specific characters' voices, he still makes listening to the story almost as enjoyable as reading.
As early as we can go back in time man has been betraying man. This is a classic tale of Greed, Lust, used against a young man to his down fall. However there is a happy ending. Too bad in this day of Enron and Bernie Madoff we can't have the same. Beautifully read as well.
Really enjoyed this, the story is great, the writing is wonderful -- a few very unlikely coincidences, but who cares? Great for commuting. Enjoy!
Love to read, and Audible has made the two-hour daily commute enjoyable!
This book has many characters and twists and turns - I love that kind of book, but if you don't, this isn't a book for you.
Edmond Dantès is betrayed by four people. He is anonymously accused of being a Bonapartist by a jealous co-worker, Danglars, and a rival for the love of Dantès' betrothed, Mercédès, Fernand. A neighbor, Caderousse, could avert the plot, but does not because he is afraid of the impact it would have on him. Villefort, the deputy crown prosecutor in Marseille, at first appears to be sympathetic, but when he discovers the case could implicate his father, he puts Edmond in a cell without trial.
Edmond spend 14 years in this cell. Towards the end of his incarceration, he meets the mad priest, Abbé Faria, named mad because he insists of his treasure. The rest of the book is about Edmond's escape, recovering the treasure on the island of Monte Cristo, and then seeking vengance on the four who betrayed him, and helping others who helped him and tried to rescue him.
In the end, Edmond wonders if he has taken the place of God, and discovers that in all, one should Wait and Hope.
I read "The Black Count" before this, Dumas used many stories he heard from his father about imprisonment in Italy which made that part very interesting.
Overall, really enjoyed - maybe slightly less than The Three Musketeers.
John Lee's narration was fabulous.
...bring back the men and women of such character. This story might as well have been written about a world of pure fantasy or written of a world in a distant galaxy. Where are the people of this character today? While at times the formalities seem stiff and nonsensical, to a man of the 21st century anyway, the level of respect to oneself and to others is astonishing.I sometimes, more than I would care to admit, imagine what life would be like if I lived in a time and place where character and self-worth, without the title and birthright of this story, were commonplace. BTW, America is the closest any peoples have come to realizing my dream. This was a first read (listen) for me but won't be the last. The life lessons available in this story are numerous and very well laid out. Could our children of today (America) even understand the lessons and experiences? Doubtful. When stealing from large and small retail chain stores is seen as harmless because "they can afford it", you began to lose hope.
Edmond Dantes was my favorite, typical right?First because he was the wronged innocent, then because I sympathized with his desire for vengeance, then I cringed from his heartlessness and then to admiration for his selflessness.
Not exactly my favorite but the most important in my eyes. The time that Edmond Dantes and Abbe Faria spent in prison together. How close they became and all that the Abbe shared with Edmond. Edmond could have used his knowledge and newly found wealth for great evil. Actually, an argument can be made that he did commit evil on multiple occasions, disguised in the cloak of providence.
Not an emotional reaction more of a visceral one. Over and over I thought, "how far civilization has fallen, all the while making fantastic technological and medical strides forward."
A simple wish. I wish I could get my son and daughters to read this, but I fear it is hopeless.
Say something about yourself!
A very long story and I thank goodness for Wikipedia ??? they have a ???relationship??? map that keeps nearly all of the relationships straight. The narration was flawless ??? John Lee is the king!! He did all the accents and languages so well it was easy to get lost. I can???t say any more than others. Five stars!!!
Two great passions - dogs and books! Sci-fi/fantasy novels are my go-to favorites, but I love good writing across all genres.
The intricate plot is fascinating and weaves through a past time and foreign places in a way that makes you feel that you are there.
Eugenia Danglar was my favorite character because she was the only woman in the novel who was not evil or avaricious and still had a real backbone. All other women characters were either sweet and wimpy or clever and evil.
This book is so long that it is really a great one to have read to you versus reading it for yourself because you can still do laundry or clean house while listening. Reading the book would be a delight but would require so much dedicated time. However, this would have been a difficult book to listen to but for the outstanding narrator. The many French names would have been difficult to keep straight without seeing them in print had the narrator not been so very good at helping the listener keep easy track of the conversations between characters by assuming distinctive speaking styles and accents for each character. He even had specific ways of conjuring the different personas of the Count so you had a real image in your mind of how Edmund was presenting himself in each situation.
Wait and Hope
It takes until about halfway through the first section of the book for the story to really get going and it is not until about the 3rd section of the book that the plot totally pulls you in. If you stay with it though, you will understand why this book has become a
This is easily one of the more enjoyable audiobooks I've listened to.
It's a long book so I'm not sure I have a single favorite scene. The plot, the web of adventure and intrigue is simply captivating.
I've read this before in hardcopy but I have to say my enjoy increased ten-fold when listening to it. As I am not French, when reading I would stumble or confuse the names, especially if there was a gap between when I could do serious reading, this problem vanished when having it read to me. I will be moving onto The Three Musketeers by the same narrator very shortly.
Not only is "The Count of Monte Cristo" a captivating story with interesting and extremely well developed plot and characters, this is one of my favorite books to listen to because John Lee does and AMAZING job reading it. He gives voice and personality to each of the characters in the most amazing way - it's not silly or overdone - just perfect. I absolutely loved listening to it, and I am sure you will too.
"A fascinating but strange literary construction"
It is competently read but extremely mannered. I thought at first he was doing it to match the author's pompous language, then I heard him doing something else and his style was the same. After so many hours of listening to it, I found his voice unpleasantly grating.
This is a story of personal revenge plotted and enacted on a monumental scale. It is so well constructed it is like a massive edifice in which stones we see on page 200 hold up towers we visit 900 pages later. It is populated with honourable villains, corrupt aristocrats, suffering innocents, virtuous poor and virtuous rich (not so many of those) and everywhere we see fortunes and reputations made and destroyed.
I found it gruesomely compelling as the story unfolded relentlessly, adorned all the way with witty and wise commentaries on society, providence and the human condition. It is the ultimate expression of the proverb Revenge is a dish best served cold. (I thought Dumas might have been the source of the idea but wikipedia tells me it originated in France a century earlier.)
I make a few observations which are not criticisms but are worth being aware of before you embark on a novel as long as 3-4 ordinary ones.
The story is (presumably by intention) completely unrealistic. There is one particular challenge to the laws of medicine which is so extreme that I wonder if it didn't seem absurd even in Dumas's day.
The narration is extremely stylised. The best way I can explain is to say that it reminded me of Italian opera. Even if you have never seen an opera you will have an idea how far it departs from the dramatic conventions of theatre, expressing instead stylised or archetypal events and feelings. In consequence (and I am not talking about the language) Dumas's novel feels much older than it is. I think it is interesting that it was written within a couple of years of Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, and David Copperfield, which feel much more modern.
While I don't have a problem with the slow pace, nor the dated style of the language, I did feel frustrated at times with the amount of padding in the description of trivial events and especially in the dialogue. I know that scholars consider his style to be masterful but I don't think they will deny that it feels pedantic compared with the flowing writing of many classic mid 19th century novels.
I enjoyed it and recommend it but, to be honest, 1300 pages was enough for me and I probably won't read his other novels.
"Dumas had a wonderful ghost writer"
The narrator did a fine job vocalizing different characters - no mean feat in a book of this length, and as the book is out of copyright (excepting recent translations) it is available for free off some sites. This means you can read as well as listen if you have an e-book, which I found helpful for a book of this length.
Dumas had an excellent ghost writer, Auguste Maquet, who drafted the plot-lines, which in turn were drawn from true stories of the day. In that sense the book is like any other where the author(s) create fiction from fact. It is nothing more than high melodrama in places, but the count's revenges are so very clever that the melodrama is secondary to the ingenious plot.
John Lee was an authoritative narrator who managed some fine distinctions between characters - in a variety of accents - again, no mean feat when he is reading an English translation and depicting characters with subtle variations in English-with-a-variety-of-French-accents.
"Epic tale of revenge"
To be able to listen for longer periods. I was only able to listen for short periods and I would lose continuity
If you have untold wealth you can do anything and I think the Count of Monte Christo lacked imagination, he wasn't very creative with his plans for revenge which would have made for a more satisfying ending.
"Long, long, long, but a superb narration!"
I would recommend the book, and this particular audio book, to any would be listeners of audio-books and, in particular, classic fiction.
The depiction of extremes in despair, through imprisonment, and seemingly eternal damnation, on to escape, towards a subsequent, aided, rise in status, and absolute, beautifully crafted revenge.
John Lee provided a fantastic narration for this epic novel. I have only heard his part in Audible's Dracula otherwise, with Alan Cummings and Tim Curry. His articulation is very clear and easy to follow, and his characterisations are very well portrayed!
'The film that should have always stayed a book!' (I watched a 2002 film portrayal of the story, I don't know why, I should have known better. A 2hr movie couldn't do it justice, which should go without saying. I believe there is a french series with Gérard Depardieu as Edmond Dantes which, if I am to believe the ratings, should be better, but who knows?)
It really is a very long listen, of course a longer listen than a read would be for most people, however it is well worth going through, with John Lee at the helm.
This is such a difficult book to review. Other reviewers have said this is the most amazing epic story.. It definitely is long, and very complicated. I expect monsieur Dumas had many a family tree, flow chart and spread sheet pinned to his wall as he was writing this to keep track. You may wish to keep notes as you go along.
Fairly simple to explain, a wronged man escapes from prison and cleverly wreaks revenge on his enemies. The plot however is so intricate, but sometimes doesn't flow very well. Some parts jump ahead too far, with the Count changing his name, that you get confused, then other scenes which only consist of one evening being spread over pages. There are some excellent swash-buckling parts, then it seems to suddenly slow down. Not an even pace.
I did not find the narrator easy to listen to. His voices are not different enough to differentiate between two characters if the text doesn't tell you '...said such-a-body', hence losing the gist of the conversation by not knowing who says what.
I was really keen to like this book, sure I would, so am surprised I didn't like it more. Personal taste?
"Wonderful story, brilliantly narrated"
This is a classic. I suppose many are familiar with the basic story, but really abridged versions and hollywood films do not do justice to this tale of betrayal, revenge, cunning, intrigue and ultimately resolution. Hard to do it justice in a review, but will definitely be listening to this again.
Although the story is around 40 hours long, but it is so well paced, that you don't notice. And in fact, do not want the book to end, yet at the same time are keen to know how the story eventually ends.
Great piece of narration. I particularly like the way John Lee does the voice of Monsieur Noitier, who can only speak with his eyes.
"Wrath of The Wronged"
As gripping a tale of betrayal and revenge as one could hope for. The rich cast of characters, ranging from the morally decrepit to the unerringly loyal, are in turns savagely exposed layer by layer or enriched with further depths and histories as the plot progresses.
There's a lot on offer here, satire of courtly power struggles and royal loyalties, family ties, greed, old vendettas, the desperation of the falsely accused... All of these aspects and more are explored through the ever evolving central figure of Edmond Dantes, as his many tiered plans of revenge are revealed piece by terrifying piece.
Wonderfully and forcefully read by John Lee - A great production.
"Unexpectedly one of my best audible books"
Not the sort of book I would normally listen to, but I enjoyed it so much (all 52 hours) that when I reached the end, I went straight back to the start and listened to it again. Something I have never done before. It was even better the second time. The story is so clever with every chapter being of significance to the plot. I will certainly listen to more by Alexandre Dumas.
The narrator, John Lee, is brilliant. His speech is clear and easy on the ear and his French pronunciation added so much to the enjoyment of this epic book.
"Outstanding Monte Christo"
I have been totally enthralled by this version of the classic Count of Monte Christo, it is truly spellbinding and the descriptions are so evocative that you would think you were there, I find myself making excuses to listen to more and more.
A really outstanding listen.
"A great classic"
I really enjoyed listening to this great classic about the determination of the count to devise appropriate retribution for the people who wronged.
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