This swashbuckling classic is set in Louis XIII's France at the same time as Descartes' wanderings took him in 1627 to La Rochelle, whose Huguenot occupants were being besieged by Cardinal Richelieu. Dumas's cardinal, one of the book's many real-life characters, is simultaneously laying devilish plans to be rid of d'Artagnan and his fellow musketeers Athos, Porthos and Aramis. I'd forgotten how complex the plot is, how relentless the action (you can't cut to the chase the whole thing is one long desperate chase on horseback, in postillions, aboard ships) and how outrageous the characters. There's no grey in Dumas's novels, especially where women are concerned. The goodies, such as saintly Constance Bonacieux with whom our brave, penniless, honourable, hot-headed young hero from Gascony, d'Artagnan, is in love are purest snowy white. The baddies, represented by beautiful, treacherous Milady de Winter, once bigamously married to Athos and now working as a spy for Richelieu, make Madame Defarge look as dangerous as Miss Muffet. --Sue Arnold, The Guardian
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
David Coward is Senior Lecturer in French, University of Leeds