A review from Amazon.com:
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.
Another review from Amazon.com
The Count of Monte Cristo, written by Alexandre Dumas revolves around the life of a young man living in France in the early 1800's. The novel begins with the handsome young sailor Edmond Dantes. He has just returned from a journey aboard the Pharaon, which is owned by a man named Monsieur Morrel. The ship's captain died on the voyage home, and Dantes assumed the post with admirable skill, so M. Morrel made him the new captain.
Not only that, but Dantes is also abut to marry his beautiful fiance. Unfortunately, all of Dantes's good fortune causes some men to become jealous and they begin to plot his downfall...
The rest of the story is about the 13 years Dantes spends in prison and then how he exacts his revenge on those who betrayed him. The story is much more than that however, it is also about a love and a man who must rediscover his soul after all goodness has been ripped away from him. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes to read, even if only the slightest bit. From pirates to prisoners, love to war, this book has something for everyone.
A great classic. I love the tale of revenge for a crime that was made up by 4 jealous men. It was an English class assignment for me in high school that I enjoyed very much. I have now replaced the paperback copy with a lovely hardcove edition that will remain in my permanent library.
Had to read for English sophomore year. Really enjoyed it. It's like a treasure hunt, adventure story, con-man character book. Talks about money and the roots of evil, sins of the father, etc. Pretty interesting read.