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4.6 out of 5 stars41
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 23 June 2015
A very good book. This story and these characters are having become classic icons for a reason. I have been a Musketeer fan since the early 80's when the Muskethounds carton series. I loved the original movie; the new steam punk version was not really by cup of tea. I loved the new BBC series, but with a bunch of British actors not even trying to hide their accents the series just had a bit of a too British feel to it. I bought it as a companion to read the original work.

The book is extremely well written I am sure it loses something in the translation but I really did think I get a great feel for French society of the time. I know the later version did not follow the story exactly, but I saw where the movies and shows got their classic moments, like d'Artagnan picking a fight with all Three Musketeers in succession and the adventure over the diamond tags.

There is a real sense of, I think what they then called honour we would call pride, but things like a gentleman's word meant something. These days if someone says they will do something you still check to make sure then if you are given someone's word they would die to fulfil it. If you had offended them then you would fight to satisfaction. This could be till someone conceded or were dead. I learn about the difference politics of the time. The two powers vying for control of France the Cardinalist, and the Royalists.

We do learn about the other Musketeers but first and form most this is d'Artagnan's adventure. The only thing I found lacking in this story was even though there were plenty of fights and action the actual thrust and parry, or the details of the fight were left out, which was a bit of a shame for me. I think the reason for this was Alexandre Dumas being a play right gave the outcome to duel but left it to the actors the fill in that part. A great read. I am tempted to learn French just so I could read the actual original, but that would take another 3 decades to get to that level of understanding. So I will stick to this very enjoyable translation.
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on 23 February 2014
I bought his book to update myself with the story now that it is a major TV series. Although the TV series is not following the story line in the book I have enjoyed the book greatly it is a great adventure and I have found myself putting off almost everything to read a few more pages. Your own imagination is allowed to run riot as you speed from one adventure to another. I have now purchased the whole box set of Musketeer adventures so many more hours of pleasure ahead!
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on 28 July 2014
Having finally finished this, I can say that I disagree with the reviewer who says that the language is inappropriate - I didn't notice any 'modernisms' or anything out of place. However it's not a piece of easy reading and the names of the characters and places can be confusing, but it's worth sticking with and the story gets very exciting! The translator says that he has kept to the previous, successful, translation apart from translating some expressions that had been left in French. I re-watched the first episode of the TV series and was surprised to find that the battles mentioned on TV appear in the notes in the book - they were real! I would suggest that you skip the introduction (leave it till the end) and just get on with reading the story.
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on 12 April 2015
What can one say that hasn't been said about this superb story! One of the best swashbucklers ever, one of my top 10 favourite books (I rate this writer's Count of Monte Cristo as 2nd best book ever....), and always worth rereads. For sure everyone will have their favourite of the four heroes, and perhaps most go for young hotheaded d'Artagnan just come up from Gascony and desperate to become a musketeer, and his confused passions for dangerous Milady and his landlord's wife Constance, but I always adored Aramis, the second youngest of the four. Handsome, elegant, much loved by women, continually talking of wanting to become a priest yet a doughty, cool-headed and fine fighter, and by far the most mysterious and has influential friends and is the lover of the Queen's confidante, the Duchesse de Chevreuse, which leads to some of the adventures in the book whilst giving only hints of the important mover and shaker he'll become in the later books. Or you may be passionate about mysteriously morose Athos, the oldest of the four, who never seems to show any interest in women and has a "past" he won't talk about. Or perhaps Porthos is your favourite - bombastic, vain, and huge, a great lovable bear of a man based apparently on the writer's own father.
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First serialised in 1844 'The Three Musketeers' has been enjoyed by millions, and long may it continue to do so. When D'Artagnan turns up in Paris he wants to join the King's Musketeers, but even as he starts out he manages to cause a disturbance. Eventually making friends with Aramis, Porthos, and Athos the four are always getting into scrapes. With the internal politics inside France D'Atagnan soon learns about the machinations that go on, and the power that Cardinal Richelieu exerts.

Getting mixed up in a plot the Musketeers end up on a perilous mission to save the honour of the Queen, as well as other adventures. Full of action and adventure this is a story that can always captivate and hold people's attention and is always well worth reading. Full of goodies and baddies and romance this is a fun read, and despite its relative length it is something that you seem to fly through. Although a full story in itself this is in actual fact part of a trilogy, this being just the first part.

I must admit that I have read this story countless times over the years, in many different translations, since I was little. This is a new translation that tries to bring back the feel of the original text, but as with many other books that have been translated numerous times over the years, I think we all have our personal favourite editions. Why this probably works so well and has stayed so popular is because it is full of honour, loyalty and friendship, as D'Artagnan and the three musketeers stick together through thick and thin, and also at the same time Dumas does inject quite a lot of humour into this.
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on 12 August 2015
Really enjoyed this read. However, the (absolutely excellent) BBC series has somewhat 'updated' the attitudes to women so, if you've seen that first, be prepared for some mixed heroism and meanness. Part way through I was aghast to find a supposedly gallant musketeer completely exploiting a maid's feelings for him. One of them does that with a governess in the BBC version, but he has an underlying motive that makes it seem less erm, callous! So, not all nobility and chivalry, but still so much fun.
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on 2 March 2014
A great book to read and often feels like living during 1640s in France whenever taking the turn of the page. Really enjoy it every moment..
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on 14 February 2014
A great book one I can't put down a well written version. You won't regret buying this book it keeps you on the edge of your seat just like the series on BBC TV.
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on 18 September 2014
I loved the BBC TV series and although it felt a little as if it was played 'tongue in cheek' I was delighted to find this book which comprises a new, more modern translation from the original French text.

My absolute favourite character is D'Artangnan, played by Luke Pasqualino and I'm hoping the series will return for more adventures, now that I've finished reading the lengthy book.
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on 30 April 2014
I loved this series and could not wait for each episode. I know it varied from the original story but this was a modernized version suitable for Sunday evening viewing. I also enjoyed very much the added documentary introducing the four main actors and their transformation into Musketeers.I can not wait for the next series, probably next year ? A Smith
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