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The Count of Monte Cristo (Penguin Classics) Mass Market Paperback – Unabridged


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Series: Penguin Classics
  • Mass Market Paperback: 1136 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (April 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014044615X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140446159
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.1 x 1.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,213 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #431,856 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: French

About the Author

Robin Buss is a writer and translator who works for theIndependent on Sunday and as television critic for The Times Educational Supplement. He studied at the University of Paris, where he took a degree and a doctorate in French literature. He is part-author of the article 'French Literature' in Encyclopaedia Britannica and has published critical studies of works by Vigny and Cocteau, and three books on European cinema, The French Through Their Films (1988), Italian Films (1989) and French Film Noir (1994). He has also translated a number of volumes for Penguin Classics.


Robin Buss is a writer and translator who works for theIndependent on Sunday and as television critic for The Times Educational Supplement. He studied at the University of Paris, where he took a degree and a doctorate in French literature. He is part-author of the article 'French Literature' in Encyclopaedia Britannica and has published critical studies of works by Vigny and Cocteau, and three books on European cinema, The French Through Their Films (1988), Italian Films (1989) and French Film Noir (1994). He has also translated a number of volumes for Penguin Classics.

Customer Reviews

Get the book and start reading!
J. Cooper
All in all, the book was a good read and I recommend it, but my advice would be to try the abridged version first and if you want/need more, then go to the unabridged.
Amazon Customer
A wonderful story, with excellent characters and an intricate plot.
P. Matthew Wesley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

806 of 815 people found the following review helpful By J. Cooper on August 28, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This review is for those who've already decided they want to read The Count of Monte Cristo (you won't regret it!), and don't know which version to get.

Short answer: see review title, duh!

The Count of Monte Cristo is my favorite book, and I've read several translations, both abridged and unabridged.

TRANSLATION
The Buss translation is the most modern, and reads most fluidly. A quick example comparing this translation with the one found on Project Gutenberg:

PG - His wife visited for him, and this was the received thing in the world, where the weighty and multifarious occupations of the magistrate were accepted as an excuse for what was really only calculated pride...

BUSS - His wife visited on his behalf; this was accepted in society, where it was attributed to the amount and gravity of the lawyer's business -- when it was, in reality, deliberate arrogance...

Buss's work reads like the book was written in English. The two or so times that the work is nearly untranslatable, Buss makes a footnote about it (eg, an insinuated insult using the formal "vous" instead of the familiar "tu"). Other translations just skip the subtlety. The most common translation out there (uncredited in my version) reads like a swamp. Trust me, get Buss.

ABRIDGED V UNABRIDGED
Abridged versions of this book rarely say "abridged." You can tell by the size: abridged is 500-700 pages, unabridged is 1200-1400 pages. Go for the unabridged.

The abridged version is VERY confusing! Pruning 1200 pages down to 600 leaves a lot of plot on the cutting room floor. Suddenly, arriving at dinner are 4 new characters; it's very tiring to try to keep up with the hole-ridden story of the abridged versions.
Read more ›
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323 of 332 people found the following review helpful By PurpleKat VINE VOICE on February 22, 2004
Format: Paperback
Warning: Do NOT pick this book up and start it if you have something that you need to do in the next day or three. You won't be able to put the book down, or if you do, you'll move zombielike through your everyday tasks while your mind stays with the adventures of Edmund Dantes.
The Count of Monte Cristo is a delicious book, full of intrigue, great fight scenes, love, passion, and witty social satire. Dumas has a wonderful grasp of human nature and a talent for rendering all the follies of man in delightful, snappy prose. I immediately recognized people that I know (yes, even myself) in his vivid characters, which made the book all the more engaging to me.
Some people might be put off by the size of the book -- it's a pretty hefty volume -- an tempted to buy the abridged version. Don't! I've heard from people who've read both versions that the abridged version is a pathetic, washed out shadow of the full novel. At any rate, as thick and impossibly long as The Count of Monte Cristo may seem when you open it for the first time, you'll feel as though it's far too short by the time you get to the last page.
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207 of 212 people found the following review helpful By Book lover on May 24, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is an example of perfect fiction writing. Its length is 5 times the average book and it still was not long enough! The story, the characters, the settings and the emotions enthralled me for days. I could not put it down. I was living the book as it took me to France, the mediterranean, Italy and every home, cave and mode of transportation detailed in exemplary fashion by Dumas. Without giving away the intrigue... This book is the story of a wronged young sailor and follows his life as he is imprisoned due to the actions of 3 jealous men. He lives in prison for an extended period of time, meeting a man who gives him hope and a life beyond his dreams. He escapes the horrid dungeon and seeks revenge on the 3 men who took away everything he ever hoped for. This book is amazing, it will not disappoint anyone. I cannot believe I did not read it before. Thank you Kindle for allowing me the pleasure of reading this book for free, however, it is worth paying for and sharing with anyone who loves to read.
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77 of 81 people found the following review helpful By P. Matthew Wesley on December 16, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I first read the Bantam abridged Monte Cristo when I was 13 years old. Then, the next year, I saw the unabridged version and immediately bought a copy. Monte Cristo is an absolutely wonderful and wonderfully written masterpiece that tells the story of a young man that could be any of several people that you and I know. It is a story of injustice, despair, remorse, cruelty, misfortune, and evil. However, at the same time, the book manages to show that in the seemingly rotten world we live in there is hope, charity, love, honor, and purity as well. Edmond is one of the greatest dynamic characters of all time, innocently sent to face punishment that he in no way deserves. While enduring this unjust punishment, he meets a man and they become friends. Edmond learns from this man that everyone acts according to their own standards, and that everyone will eventually receive reward for the actions or crimes that they have committed, whether that reward be payment for honest living or pain in reparation for hardships forced upon others. Edmond then becomes that reparation, rewarding those that were his true friends, and exacting revenge upon those that caused him pain. A wonderful story, with excellent characters and an intricate plot. I would recommend this book for anyone that wants to laugh, cry, and triumph with a single character and his struggles. As the title states, this is one of my favorite books of all time, the only other that really compares with it is Victor Hugo's Les Miserables.
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