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Alexandre Dumas (pere) (1802-1870) was the son of a distinguished General in the Republican Army. Interested in writing from an early age, Dumas left for Paris where he found work in the household of the Duc D'Orleans. He soon found success writing historical plays and gained important friendships, money and the Librarianship of the Palais Royale. By 1832 his plays were celebrated throughout France, but he contracted cholera and was sent to Switzerland to convalesce. There he took to writing travel books and eventually turned to fiction, primarily adventure stories and historical novels, for which he has an enduring reputation. Other titles by this remarkable author available in Wordsworth Classics: The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers.
Gr 9 Up-Each volume includes the abridged story plus a generous amount of additional information, including an illustrated list of characters, an author biography, time lines, and an article about film adaptations. Students who are writing reports and readers who move on to the original novels will be well served by these extras. SAT vocabulary words are defined in footnotes, which also clarify plot details or offer historical context. Fortunately the font is small enough to be ignored easily, so these notes do not interrupt the flow of the story. The drawings are fluid and expressive, with skillful shading and dark tones that emphasize the stories' drama. The square, horizontal paneling is not especially inventive, but it makes the texts easy to follow. While these titles might not be as popular as superhero and manga comics, they are accessible introductions to the classics, and should make life easier for reluctant readers.-Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library, NY Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.