Penguin Classics version of Count of Monte Cristo for $0.57


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/11/22/penguin-classics-version-of-co.html


#2

Your local library definetly has this! For free! Your taxes or other assessments have already paid for it. If they are worth their salt, you can also download it in various formats, for free! If not, campaign for a local library district where you live, and make sure everyone has access to great books like this one. For free!


#3

Are we sure this is a real price? I seem to recall all sorts of things being on Amazon for a penny, because some AI picked the price, and how could that possibly make money?


#4

While you’re waiting for the book to be delivered, you can read Italo Calvino’s short story, The Count of Monte Cristo.


#5

Unfortunately, the linked version for $0.57 isn’t the Penguin Classics version translated by Robin Buss. That version is still $9 here: https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B002RI9KL8/

The linked $0.57 version is from a publisher called “e-artnow” and likely uses a different version of the text.


#6

I can’t find a decent Monte Cristo at any of my local delis for under 11 bucks.


#7

Cripes, it’s like $25 dollars at Disneyland now. This is a steal!


#8

This is great to hear, because I fell in love with this book when I was 18 and read it for the first time, but I’ve only been able to find horribly stilted translations since when I’ve tried to reread it. I’m pretty sure this is the right one. Thanks for the confirmation!


#9

You can get a completely free ebook copy of the Count of Monte Cristo (as well as a LOT of other public-domain titles) from quite a few sources:



http://manybooks.net/titles/dumasalpetext98crsto12.html

…And so on.


#10

Reminds me of the time when I was working at a grocery store as a teenager and having to do inventory. My boss was named Monty, so it was natural to call it “The Count of Monty’s Crisco.”


#11

Volume, volume, volume.

Get it? It’s a book…

I’ll see myself out…


#12

Came here to say just that. :slight_smile:


#13

I’ve seen these offered for my Kindle for free.

They’re public domain texts, hovered up by a bot (I assume) from places like Project Gutenberg and reformatted for Kindle really badly.


#14

It is a sandwich too. I thought it was just a cigar


#15


#16

My first thought was, “Does it require a separate purchase of the ‘Kings to You’ DLC?”


#17

I just want to pile on to this. Shame on BoingBoing for punting this. It’s an out-of-copyright book, available on Project Gutenberg!

How things have changed from the BoingBoing we knew …


#18

Yeah, darn those people who like physical copies of books! They don’t belong here on BoingBoing!! Shame on them!!!


#19

I lived for a few years in a small town (maybe 20k people) in rural England with two excellent used book stores; you could be certain of finding pretty much any Penguin classic in one or the other of these shops for 25-40 pence, so around the price of Mark’s bogus find. If they didn’t have it, you could walk down the street to the upscale “antiquarian” bookseller, who would probably the same translation in hardback for a quid or two. (He called people like me “readers”, a slightly derogatory term in contrast to “collectors”, though he was always happy to serve readers and thereby get rid of noncollectable stock.)

Now I’m in a city of a million people and we have around the same number of dedicated used bookshops (ie not counting Goodwill, library lobbies, and the used texts at the university bookstores). And it costs me more than $0.57 in gas just to get to them.


#20

Huh, I had no idea there were different translations available, and how important they would be. I’ve a cheap ebook of Monte Cristo that I’ve been struggling with for a while now, and it looks like the older translation it’s using might be somewhat at fault.

I found this reddit thread that illustrates the differences, using some text from the beginning of the book:

Robin Buss translation
One of the spectators on the terrace of For Saint-Jean had been particularly affected by the vague sense of unease that hovered among them, so much so that he could not wait for the vessel to come to land; he leapt into a small boat and ordered it to be rowed out to the Pharaon, coming alongside opposite the cove of La Réserve.

Peter Washington translation
The vague disquietude which prevailed amongst the spectators had so much affected one of the crowd that he did not await the arrival of the vessel in harbour but, jumping into a small skiff, desired to be pulled alongside the Pharaon, which he reached as she rounded the creek of La Réserve.

Original French:
La vague inquiétude qui planait sur la foule avait particulièrement atteint un des spectateurs de l’esplanade de Saint-Jean, de sorte qu’il ne put attendre l’entrée du bâtiment dans le port; il sauta dans une petite barque et ordonna de ramer au-devant du Pharaon, qu’il atteignit en face de l’anse de la Réserve.

My version is either the Washington, or similar to it. The Buss version looks so much easier to read.