Book Review: The Sultan of Monte Cristo

The Sultan of Monte Cristo
The Sultan of Monte Cristo

Blurb:

This vivid novel offers much entertainment and excitement throughout its telling of various adventures.  Although the main character’s motives are presented, only small portions of the story involve his attempted redemption, leaving room for resolution in a subsequent sequel.  Creating a more obvious through line that better connects all of the characters and their actions will improve the overall narrative while the multitude of subplots offer the creative material necessary to build a compelling series.

Having no former knowledge of The Count of Monte Cristo hinders the reader’s understanding of the protagonist’s current situation, but additional sequels provide a format that allows room for necessary background information to be provided.  Dantes’ character is undoubtedly flawed, a huge asset in terms of presenting a relatable protagonist.  Offering further insight into his past will allow audiences to better understand his former behaviors and appreciate the lengths to which he will go to try to remedy his wrongdoings.

Raymee is introduced rather abruptly, but is a strong and gripping character nonetheless.  One is instantly impressed by her intelligence and confidence and appreciates the desperation of her situation.  Raymee’s motives are a bit muddled, as her desire seems to change from one of avoiding her betrothal in favor of true love to that of acceptance of her fate in exchange for power.  The disclosure of Dantes’ influence on her behavior is a brilliant addition, as it strongly connects the two characters and allows for vivid representation of the monstrosity of revenge.  The castrations are unexpected and graphic, characteristics highly indicative of current popular television programs.  Parallels between Raymee and Daenerys Targaryen from the program Game of Thrones can certainly be drawn, as each beautiful female develops from youth to a place of authority, cunningly demonstrating her power to influence her subjects.  Raymee’s continued rise, especially following the implied birth of the Arabian prince, and potential fall is certainly deserving of further exploration, particularly if she continues to gain inspiration from Dantes’ past.

Review:

I have not read the original version, The Count of Monte Cristo. However, this short read turned out to be a pleasurable read for Dantes and Mercedes, who are lovers. I like how the story is written in a simple and easy-to-read read manner. Dantes later learns about his anscesty, which is traced all the way back to Mary Magdalene. I think the continuation of the story from one chapter to another is a little abrupt and leaves the readers feel that the story is hanging. As a reader, it takes a while to follow the shift in the settings of the story.

I like the fact that Mercedes is being protrayed as an independent woman who goes on to venture into a business although she agreed to become Dantes’ second wife. She also asked Dantes to marry her, and I see this as a form of a strength of woman.

Overall, I would give this book a 3-star for the characterization of Mercedes and Dantes.

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