• The Black Count

  • Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo
  • By: Tom Reiss
  • Narrated by: Paul Michael
  • Length: 13 hrs and 30 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (2,074 ratings)

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The Black Count  By  cover art

The Black Count

By: Tom Reiss
Narrated by: Paul Michael
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Publisher's summary

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE FOR BIOGRAPHY • ONE OF ESQUIRE’S BEST BIOGRAPHIES OF ALL TIME

General Alex Dumas is a man almost unknown today, yet his story is strikingly familiarbecause his son, the novelist Alexandre Dumas, used his larger-than-life feats as inspiration for such classics as The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers.

But, hidden behind General Dumas's swashbuckling adventures was an even more incredible secret: he was the son of a black slavewho rose higher in the white world than any man of his race would before our own time. Born in Saint-Domingue (now Haiti), Alex Dumas made his way to Paris, where he rose to command armies at the height of the Revolutionuntil he met an implacable enemy he could not defeat.

The Black Count is simultaneously a riveting adventure story, a lushly textured evocation of 18th-century France, and a window into the modern world’s first multi-racial society. TIME magazine called The Black Count "one of those quintessentially human stories of strength and courage that sheds light on the historical moment that made it possible." But it is also a heartbreaking story of the enduring bonds of love between a father and son.

©2012 Tom Reiss (P)2012 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

"From pike-wielding mobs to prisoners locked in a fortress tower, The Black Count, a fascinating, detailed account of the life of Alexandre Dumas' father, is as action packed as The Count of Monte Cristo. Unlike Dumas' famous adventure novel, however, Reiss' incredible tale is true." (Candice Millard, New York Times best-selling author of The River of Doubt and Destiny of the Republic)

2013, NAACP Image Award, Nominated

2012, National Book Critics Circle Awards, Finalist

2013, PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography, Short-listed

2013, Phillis Wheatley Book Award, Short-listed

2012, Plutarch Award, Finalist

2013, Pulitzer Prize, Winner

“Rousing and thought-provoking, The Black Count is an adventure like no other. I marveled at every twist and turn of this remarkable true story, brought to life with the charm and personal touch that has become the trademark of Tom Reiss.” (Laurence Bergreen, New York Times bestselling author of Columbus and Over the Edge of the World)