Like all classics, Alexandre Dumas's novel The Count of Monte Cristo has the great appeal of an intriguing plot, as well as what defines every classic: memorable characters. Extremely popular as a writer in his time, Dumas's appeal is to all ages and genders.
The historical context of the play provides much intrigue. That the Abbe Faria is imprisoned for the opposite reason that Edmund Dantes stimulates interest in the history of France as well as the mystery of the Abbe's acquiring of the treasure of Monte Cristo and the mystery of Gerard de Villefort's father, Monsieur de Noitier. Of course, the cleverness of Dantes as Monte Cristo with all his disguises as he accomplishes his goals as the paraclete of Providence who avenges injustice is among the creme de la creme.
Finally, while Edmund Dantes does avenge himself, he is no Madame DeFarge, a flat character of one demanding idea. Instead, his vengeance is that of the type in Old Testament-style and is tempered by his loyalty and generosity to the Morrel family. The once young sailor has never forgotten the love and kindness that M. Morrel showed to Edmund's father while he was in prison; so, he pays the debts of the shipowner and saves him from bankruptcy and disgrace. Likewise, he rescues Morrel's son Maxillian from despair, teaching him to "Wait and Hope."
Having worthwhile themes, an intriguing plot, and memorable characters, The Count of Monte Cristo is a classic that yet delights young and old, male and female. It is a novel that has been read by the twelve-year-olds who happily map their way through the heavy two volumes, and then by young adults and again by older adults, who all find meanings of their own. Indeed, it is a wonderful novel, a delight for all who enjoy adventure and love--but, most of all, excellent tales. Even some reluctant readers have been converted and have enjoyed this novel.
I will give you my list of reasons for reading this book and leave the paragraph writing to you.
I personally recommend The Count of Monte Cristo to boys and girls equally - but I prefer to consider it one of my better boy-book recomendations. First of all, it is definitely an adventure book. A prisoner is falsely accused and convicted who is then lead on a treasure hunt by a fellow prisoner. After a brilliant and successful escape - he finds this treasure and now has the wealth to back up any plan he can think of to get revenge on those who have wronged him in life.
Even though this book centers on revenge it goes into more than that. It is about justice, pain, strength, overcoming adversity, and the power of love (the romantic element is actually pretty strong which is why girls also love this book).
One thing that deters students who are not avid readers is the length and the French names in this book. It is not a book I recommend to students who already hate to read.