Of course you've heard of the three famous swordsmen, but did you know that the novel is really funny, as well as replete with romance and adventure? John Lee does, and his narration plays up all three attributes to great effect. For those who need a reminder, Dumas's classic adventure presents the escapades of three of King Louis's musketeers, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, plus D'Artagnan (a musketeer in training) as they foil a few of Cardinal Richelieu's many devious plots. Amid much swordplay, they actually utter the famous line: "All for one and one for all." Lee struggles a bit with accents and characterizations early in the production. His hesitations disappear after a few chapters, however, and he gives fine voice to the rest of the madcap tale.
©1923 Public Domain; (P)2008 Tantor
Reading The Three Musketeers was great fun! I especially loved the way it ended. I count it among my favorites now, and will no doubt read it again. The impressive combination of Alexandre Dumas and John Lee brought it to life for me in a way I didn't think possible. I love it!
***NOTE 1: Thanks to Audible and John Lee for making this experience possible. It was important to me that the experience be authentic, realistic, and free flowing. Through Audible's and John Lee's efforts, everything that I feared would make reading a noted classic like this cumbersome or difficult???has disappeared. Instead, it was just... amazing!
***NOTE 2: Mr. Lee, PLEASE narrate James Clavell's Shogun and King Rat! I think only you could really do them justice.
I know from whence I speak.
There is a reason some of these books are called Classics and why the authors reputations have stood the test of time. Unfortunately, our exposure to stories such as The Three Musketeers is often through cinema and they come off lightheaded. This unabridged audio is so much better and its almost a shame that it shares the same title with the inane film version. You won't feel like you're listening to an audio version of the movie. Moreover, it is one of the best productions I've listened to on audible.com. John Lee is a marvelous reader in any event and at the top of his form in this book.
I didn't make it through the whole book, some other book came up and I switch over, and haven't made it back to this one. I bought this book because I recognized the narrator from another book and I have to say that I think John Lee could be one of the best Audiobook Narrators in the World. He took a book(This one) that I really wasn't all that interested in and made every second worth listening to. Thank You John Lee Thank You
A part-time buffoon and ersatz scholar specializing in BS, pedantry, schmaltz and cultural coprophagia.
You go to him for action and plotting, for dialogue and badassery. His novels don't just pull you through them, they hurl you through. 3x speed was not fast enough to keep up with my interest. Les Trois Mousquetaires is pulp before their was pulp and noir before their was noir. I personally like the Count of Monte Cristo better, but I could also argue that 3M is a better-made novel. Anyway, if you like adventure books read it. If you like littttttraaaature. Get off your pretentious leather chair and read it too.
It's a classic, what's not to love?
The whole book was memorable. In today's society, it's easy to get lost in the language but don't let that stop you. The fight between Dartanian and the three Muskateers near the beginning was my favorite part. Especially seeing as they bonded so closely after that.
Dartanian was my favorite. He was a proud man with a good heart and fierce loyalties.
Do yourself a favor and stick with this book. Once it grabs you, you'll be hooked. If you get confused with a particular section, go back and listen again.
Much richer and fuller than any movie or adaptation I've seen before. It is an epic and long but well worth it. Who knew...
I know. I know. One star?? A swashbuckling adventure novel beloved for a couple of centuries? Yeah, well.
I've tried to read this before. It had "me" written all over it: aforementioned buckling of swashes, romance and derring-do and so forth. But I never penetrated very far. There was a tone – perhaps to the particular translation I tried, perhaps to the work itself – that just put me off, exemplified by the instance of D'Artagnan selling the yellow horse after his father impressed upon him how he must never do so, and he promised faithfully that he would not. It was such a dishonorable, dishonest, ugly thing to do, in a book I had expected to be dripping with honor – and it was just the beginning.
Last year I finally went with the audiobook, on the theory that classics that have not held a huge amount of interest for me go down better read aloud. I hold the reader, John Lee, responsible for my being able to finish it with as much tolerance as I did; if I’d been just reading words on a page I think it would have ended up in the trash by page 200. I hated this. I truly, deeply hated this. I’ve seen at least a couple of movie versions; I’ve enjoyed them, somewhat, as frothy swashbucklers, of course. I always expected the book to be better, though.
One of my two Goodreads comments on the book was:
"These people are all horrible - honorless, slutty morons. And this is a classic, beloved by schoolboys for - what, over 200 years? God help us."
And that’s my biggest problem with the book. Perhaps it was supposed to be ironic, some kind of commentary on honor and courage and standards and morality through the depiction of noble swordsmen who were actually men you wouldn’t trust alone with a coin or a woman. I don’t remember ever coming across that take on it, though.
Athos, Porthos, Aramis, D'Artagnan. These are the heroes I wanted to read about. The brave and loyal soldiers, the champions of right and defenders of womanhood and of France … I have no idea where my ideas came from – the movies, perhaps? What I found as I listened to the book was that Athos was a hypocritical prig, Aramis was a hypocritical pseudo-religious, Porthos was a gluttonous gambling dandy, and D'Artagnan a cocky young jackass. They were all four drunkards, given any opportunity; they were all womanizers, cuckolding widely and wildly, dropping whatever girl they had been bedding to move on without a pause or juggling as many as possible simultaneously. And the much-vaunted all-for-one loyalty? I didn't see it. Every single one of them was as likely to throw his buddies under the 18th century equivalent of a bus as to support them, or to leave them in assorted lurches. Then get a good laugh out of it. And the interactions between these four and the man-servants they could barely afford but NEEDED made The Comedy of Errors seem like a shining illustration of workplace harmony. It was depressing.
D'Artagnan in particular was a letdown. The whole situation of swiving the maid in the room adjacent to her mistress, and vice versa – I wanted to throttle him. A lot. For one thing – seriously? They've let prepubescent boys read this for centuries? Oh, that’s just awesome. So, buckling of swashes, romance and derring-do and so forth? The swashes were askew at best; the romance was not the way Anne Shirley defines it (nor me), the doing wasn’t so derring. I only made it through the whole thing because it was an audiobook with a good narrator, and because I gritted my teeth in determination to see it all the way through. It was a deep disappointment, and I hated it.
My other Goodreads comment:
“Chapter 67: Conclusion
Oh, thank God.”
I never read the print version.
I like the ending, but I will not share that with you.
I have listen to about 30 books read by John Lee. I love his voice. He does not change his voice much when switching between characters and for some reason I find this lack of strong change more soothing then readers who constantly change their voice.
There were many parts of the story that were very funny.
If you are looking another Count of Monte Cristo, like I was, this is not it, so I was disappointed by that, but once I got into the story I really enjoy it.
The Three Musketeers is another masterpiece from the writer, Alexandre Dumas. Written with terrific skill, this novel relates the story of D'Ärtagnan and his three companions Athos, Porthos, and Aremis seeking to foil the schemes of the imposing Cardinal and faithfully serve the King. This novel contains incredible themes, intricate plots, and is a well written novel. The Three Musketeers well deserves its title among the top classics. The story kept me captivated and on the edge the entire way! John Lee is an outstanding narrator! With his incredible ability to change to the voices of the characters, he brought the novel alive. Overall, the audiobook, The Three Musketeers, is well worth the time and money!
SciFi/Fantasy and Classics to History, Adventure and Memoirs to Social Commentary—I love and listen to it all!
How can anyone NOT like The Three Musketeers?!? I read this when I was creeping up on adolescence, and it's as irresistible now as it was then. And though John Lee doesn't earn a four-star rating, it was wonderful to listen to. I chose him as a narrator because, even though I adore Simon Vance, the sample just told me that I'd be nodding off somewhere along the way. John Lee's performance seemed more rollicking, more exciting. And it is. He captures the personalities of each character, spot-on, and not only that: some of his vocal characterizations add to the already rich characters! What keeps him from getting a four-star rating is his oh-so annoying way of pronouncing each name with a hyper-correct and painful enunciation with extreme inflections. Plus there's a pause, as in, "said....pause...wait for it... D'ArtagNAN." It was jarring. And as it's a quite lengthy novel, it became skin-crawling as well. I don't regret choosing his version over Vance's, though, simply because his pacing, his sense of drama, and of humor, are flawless and engaging. Just be warned. You might want to consider what will be tolerable to you over an extended listening time.
Other than that, don't deny yourself this listening pleasure. Alexandre Dumas was brilliant with action, brilliant with humor, and light spirits. And his dialogue flows as naturally as anything ever written. I will be listening to the sequels. I wonder how Vance will do with their narration? I'm delighted to find out...!
Having seen the films I did not know what to expect. There are so many twists and turns in the emotions of the book and the story. This reading really bought out the humour.
The reading was brilliant I soon became absorbed into the story. The narrator was extremely good and after a while I was unaware of the narrator's voice and only heard the characters.
I recommend this book
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