The epic tale of revenge, retribution, and suffering. Young sailor Edmond Dantes is thrown into the Chateau d’If on the eve of his wedding night for a crime he did not commit. While in jail, he befriends another prisoner who becomes his teacher, learns about the location of a buried treasure, and becomes determined to escape and plot the destruction of the three men who put him there.

Although I immensely enjoyed certain parts of this book, I found it pressing through many chapters of details concerning the villains of the story. Edmond and Abbe Faria’s time together was easily one of the best parts of the book. Overall, I found hope and redemption, forgiveness and life after death to be more common themes than I expected. Edmond finds his own parallel storyline in Valentine Villefort and Maximillian Morrel, and he saves them from his own plot of vengeance, eventually giving them his entire fortune. Even the count finds love again, but not with the empty shell of Mercedes, whose character is the most tragic in the whole story, for she cannot escape by death, and cannot forgive herself saying, “You (Edmond) have spared me, yet of all those who have fallen under your vengeance I was the most guilty.”

Recommended as a must for the revenge-seekers. But beware, this book easily earns the Klingon phrase, “Revenge is a dish best served cold”, as the vengeance is both satisfying and slow.