Book Review: The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

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musketeersThe Three Musketeers

Written by Alexandre Dumas 
Translated by Lowell Bair
Published by Bantam Classics on June 1, 1984 
Originally published in 1844
Genre/Topics: Fiction, Classic, Adventure
635 pages 

Three Word Review: Adventure, Revenge, Comradeship

“All for one, one for all.”

The Three Musketeers is an adventure book about four French men, Athos, Porthos, Aramis, and d’Artagnan, who stick together at any cost. Their motto: “All for one, one for all” is often used even today to describe a close friendship. Athos, Porthos, and Aramis are musketeers who fight for the king and d’Artagnan strives to be one of them. They’re not even close friends at the beginning. They come across many enemies, but are always up to the challenge to duel and use their swords. Of course, there’s even a lady in distress that they must fight to rescue. The Three Musketeers has a little everything: adventure, revenge, political conflict, romance, suspense, and humor. The many pages seem to quickly fly by. Dumas wrote in newspaper installments, so each chapter leaves the reader wanting to know what happens next. I highly suggest this book for a fun read. The Three Musketeers is the first book in the d’Artagnan series.

Since I don’t read French, I researched different translations. The translations vary between 600 – 750 pages, so you need to decide which version fits closest to the original text and the style of writing you prefer. Just make sure you do not read the abridged version. I probably could have read a translation that was closer to the text, but this writing flowed for me. Movies based on this book don’t match the thrilling writing. I’m now ready to read Twenty Years After, which is the sequel to The Three Musketeers.

Book Review: Little Women

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Little Women 

by Louisa May Alcott
Published: 1868
Ages: 10 & up

I just finished reading this book for the third time. Perhaps I enjoy Little Women, because you can see yourself as one of the main characters. Maybe I enjoy this book because I have two sisters who each have her own personality yet we like spending time together. I would describe this classic as a coming of age with personal struggles, family relationships, and four unique perspectives as the girls become young women. I can’t give this book an age frame, since it’s on many ‘book lists’. The first time I read this book I got it from the adult fiction section at the library. However, this book truly can be enjoyed for readers who like a glimpse into a different time frame, wholesome writing, and similar life struggles as their own. There are out dated words that you may need to look up, which was helpful reading with my kindle. I’ve also listened to this book.

Little Women takes place in Concord, Massachusetts, in the nineteenth century. It is the story of Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy who begin at the start of the book from the ages of sixteen to eleven, respectfully. Technically, the book is divided into two sections that the reader clearly picks up. The March family was once well off, but due to the war they lived somewhat in poverty. As the oldest, Meg is mature, sometimes motherly, and follows society expectations. Jo wishes she was born a boy who is a writer, fairly independent, and outspoken. Louisa May Alcott’s own life is supposedly closest to Jo. Beth is timid, stays close to home, and is a gentle soul who helps others. Amy is an artist, proper, and plans to marry rich. Throughout the book, you witness illness, coming out parties, Christmas celebrations, courting, importance of religion, future dreams, marriages, and children. Little Women is a fairly long book for younger ages, but I still think many ages will like it.