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Discussion Starter #1
Hello.  I need some advice.

I am reading The Count of Monte Cristo.  At first it was awesome but about 1/3 of the way through, it started getting a bit tedious and I don't look forward to reading it anymore.  Does it start getting good again soon?  I read books to enjoy them but I don't want to give up too soon.

Anela
 

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One of my favorites, but I will say, if you don't have a good translation the going can get tough. I read it on Kindle, I'll see if I can find the link to the translation I read, because I found it very entertaining.


This edition is available for free from feedbooks I think. I tried the free one first and it locked up my kindle because of format issues. I removed it, bought the above one and read it. I haven't tried the feedbook again, so it may have been fixed.
 

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As previously observed, a good translation is a must.  I will also observe that when it was written, there was much less available in terms of home enteretainment.  As a result, books tended to be longer with lots more descriptive detail.  Many were serialized, so a chapter would come out with each monthly issue of some periodical.  They'd try to end with something that would make folks go buy the following month's issue.  Also, at least in England, I think writers were paid by the word, which, as you can imagine, encouraged rather more flamboyant language than we're used to in modern books.  You might want to try a good abridged version to get to the meat of the story.  Or an annotated version that will help explain the period detail.

Ann
 

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It's been so long since I read it I don't remember any specifics, though I remember I liked it quite well (if not enough to re-read it). I don't recall any "slow spots", but then again I enjoyed the middle portion of Moby Dick when many other people I know have said how boring they found that part, so who knows? :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I downloaded a sample of the version Red recommended and will give that one a try.  Maybe it is just the translation I have.  Thank you all for your input.  I will continue reading it.

Anela
 

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Seems like lots of us have read it. . .so if you have questions or comments post 'em. . . .maybe we can get a good discussion going. . . . .maybe I'll go get it and re-read it just to refresh my memory. . . .:D

Ann
 

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Ann in Arlington said:
Also, at least in England, I think writers were paid by the word, which, as you can imagine, encouraged rather more flamboyant language than we're used to in modern books.
I think the process is/was that an editor would tell the author how much space he wanted to fill up and how much he would pay for the work. The actual numbers on the payment per word was a calculation done to see if the editor was making a good offer.

Ann in Arlington said:
You might want to try a good abridged version to get to the meat of the story.
I seem to recall an article I read somewhere saying that few people had read the entire book in English, as it was commonly abridged to 2/3 of it's original length in translation. I've got the full version on my Kindle, but haven't started it yet.

Mike
 

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jmiked said:
I think the process is/was that an editor would tell the author how much space he wanted to fill up and how much he would pay for the work. The actual numbers on the payment per word was a calculation done to see if the editor was making a good offer.

I seem to recall an article I read somewhere saying that few people had read the entire book in English, as it was commonly abridged to 2/3 of it's original length in translation. I've got the full version on my Kindle, but haven't started it yet.

Mike
I am at the part where he is filling up space. ;D
 

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Stick with it Anela. . .skimming is a good skill to have sometimes!  :D

Ann
 

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Most of the English translated "abridged" versions are really ones that were censored. The sexual overtones were removed.Specifically
and the chapters where two of the female characters have a sexual relationship, and some implied between the count and a young, but Legal age, male friend. [/spoilers]
 

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I never read the book, watched the movie and really liked it.  Now that you mention the book, I think I'll pick me up a copy (unless its available on the K).
 

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Sweety,. the link to one of the kindle ed. is on this thread.
 

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jmiked said:
I think the process is/was that an editor would tell the author how much space he wanted to fill up and how much he would pay for the work. The actual numbers on the payment per word was a calculation done to see if the editor was making a good offer.

I seem to recall an article I read somewhere saying that few people had read the entire book in English, as it was commonly abridged to 2/3 of it's original length in translation. I've got the full version on my Kindle, but haven't started it yet.

Mike
Steven Brust's The Phoenix Guards and Five Hundred Years After (no Kindle versions yet) were written as a sort of homage to these "romance" novelists (in particular Alexandre Dumas): lots of florid writing that is overly wordy by today's standards. It's often humorous, though sometimes it gets in the way of the story. (My favorite is where the narrator spends a couple paragraphs explaining why he is not going to waste the reader's time with a description of a character's horse since it would do nothing to add to the story, then a few pages later he mentions a character riding off on a horse which he describes in a long sentence or two, making me laugh out loud.)
 

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I read the abridged version and loved it.  Then I read the abridged version to my kids, before we all went to see the movie.  It helps to keep a list of the characters so you know who is who.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Carol Hanrahan said:
I read the abridged version and loved it. Then I read the abridged version to my kids, before we all went to see the movie. It helps to keep a list of the characters so you know who is who.
I have a spreadsheet. 8)
 

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I'm currently reading it and have been for awhile--have read several books in between.  I cut, pasted and printed the chapter summaries and commentaries from Cliff Notes and also printed some stuff from SparkNotes, just I can refresh my memory in between reads and keep track of the characters.


Juanita
 

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Does anyone know the details of the version contained in the Mobilereference Works of Alexandre Dumas collection? Translator? Abridged or unabridged?

I really like the Mobilereference collections, but the details on the translations they use are some kind of state secret or something.
 
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