I was happy to find The Monk here as it now means I won't have to replace any more paperback copies of this fantastic tale. I must admit that I haven't yet met anyone who has not loved this after reading it. Written in under three months Matthew Lewis thereafter came to be called 'Monk' Lewis, due to the popularity of this story.
As the title would suggest, this book centres around a monk, Ambrosio, and those who surround him. On the surface, Ambrosio is revered by the people of Madrid as almost saintlike - but is he? Holier than thou he may appear, but beneath the surface there is a man who is vain and thinks he is better than others. Camp, crazy, with cross dressing, lust, obsession, pride, vanity, and some humour along with the horror this is a tale that grabs you from the beginning. This is a book that you could write books on if you were to do a full analysis of it, but why bother? Lets face it, you are looking for something that is fun and readable, and don't want to be bored with deeper meanings (unless you are studying it), so just sit back read, enjoy and be enthralled by this book.