There is one book that stands out above others as my favorite summertime read. Harry Potter? No. Twilight? No. Don't misunderstand. I love those books and am waiting with bated breath for "Breaking Dawn." But my summer fave is "The Count of Monte Cristo." I love the depth of the passion found in both the charity and forgivness and the revenge. I love the frailty of human nature and the weakness of character, even in noble and honorable men. I am sorrowed at the betrayal, the lost love and the hardships thrown upon the characters. I am impressed and delighted by the discovery of knowledge and intelligence in the lowliest of places. I am captivated by the pursuit of revenge and judgment over love and mercy. I was swept away by the passion, vigor, love and hate of this novel and say to anyone looking for a summer read...read "The Count of Monte Cristo." (Abriged version recommended.)
Please indulge me in sharing two favorite excerpts.
(When Dantes first sees the isand, Monte Cristo)
"At seven o'cock the next evening all was ready, at ten minutes past seven they rounded the lighthouse just as the beacon was kindled. The sea was calm with a fresh wind blowing from the south-east; they sailed under a sky of azure where God was also lighting up his lanterns, each one of which is a world."
Having repaid, in kind, those who had treated him kindly, Dante prepares to repay those by whom he has not been treated well.
""Now, farewell to kindness, humanity, gratitude," said he. "Farewell to all the sentiments which rejoice the heart. I have played the part of Providence in recompensing the good, may the god of vengeance now permit me to punish the wicked!" Muttering these words, he made a sign, and the yacht immediately put out to sea."
And then again, the movie is pretty great. But the book is better. Let me refer you once again to the excerpts provided above. :)