The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo

The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo


By (author) Tom Reiss, Read by Paul Michael

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  • Publisher: Random House Audio Publishing Group
  • Format: CD-Audio
  • Dimensions: 130mm x 147mm x 30mm | 249g
  • Publication date: 18 September 2012
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0449012670
  • ISBN 13: 9780449012673
  • Edition: Unabridged
  • Edition statement: Unabridged

Product description

Here is the remarkable true story of the real Count of Monte Cristo - a stunning feat of historical sleuthing that brings to life the forgotten hero who inspired such classics as "The Count of Monte Cristo" and "The Three Musketeers." The real-life protagonist of "The Black Count," General Alex Dumas, is a man almost unknown today yet with a story that is strikingly familiar, because his son, the novelist Alexandre Dumas, used it to create some of the best loved heroes of literature. Yet, hidden behind these swashbuckling adventures was an even more incredible secret: the real hero was the son of a black slave -- who rose higher in the white world than any man of his race would before our own time. Born in Saint-Domingue (now Haiti), Alex Dumas was briefly sold into bondage but made his way to Paris where he was schooled as a sword-fighting member of the French aristocracy. Enlisting as a private, he rose to command armies at the height of the Revolution, in an audacious campaign across Europe and the Middle East - until he met an implacable enemy he could not defeat. The Black Count is simultaneously a riveting adventure story, a lushly textured evocation of 18th-century France, and a window into the modern world's first multi-racial society. But it is also a heartbreaking story of the enduring bonds of love between a father and son.

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Author information

TOM REISS is the author of the celebrated international bestseller "The Orientalist." His biographical pieces have appeared "The New Yorker," "The New York Times" and other publications. He makes his home in New York City.

Review quote

"It's hard to imagine a more colorful or engaging subject...In the wonderful hands of Tom Reiss, Alex Dumas comes to vivid life, illuminating far-flung corners of history and culture. This is a terrific book." --Jon Meacham, Pulitzer Prize winning author of "American Lion "and "Franklin and Winston" "Tom Reiss can do it all...In "The Black Count "the master journalist-storyteller opens the door to the truth behind one of literature's most exciting stories, and opens it wide enough to show the delicate beauty of the room within." -Darin Strauss, National Book Critics Circle Award winning author of "Half a Life "and "Chang and Eng" " " "An""important and necessary book about one of the great forgotten heroes of the eighteenth century... a masterful biography, richly detailed, highly researched and completely absorbing. "The Black Count" is a triumph." --Amanda Foreman, "New York Times" bestselling author of "A World on Fire "and "Georgiana" " " "Reiss combines the talent of a thorough English detective with the literary flair of a French novelist to produce a story that is as fresh as today's headlines but as old as the Greek classics...Triumphant." --Jack Weatherford, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World" " " "Rousing and thought provoking, "The Black Count "is an adventure like no other. Imarveled at every twist and turn of this remarkable true story. It's a brilliant choice ofsubject, brought to life with the charm and personal touch that have become the trademark of Tom Reiss." -Laurence Bergreen, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Columbus: The Four Voyages "and "Louis Armstrong: An Extravagant Life" " " "Totally thrilling -- a fascinating, beautifully written and deeply researched biography that brings to life one of history's great forgotten characters the swashbuckling, flamboyant, and romantic mulatto count whose true life belongs in a Hollywood movie."