Once upon a time, I read a lot of classic literature. At least, I read a lot of excerpts—whatever was required of me for high school English. Once an assignment, reading classic literature is now a rare opportunity.
It's difficult to find time to read fiction during school semesters, and the outdoors beckon during summer. Thus, over the last few years, I've done most of my fiction reading over Christmas break. This year's novel of choice: Alexandre Dumas' The Count of Monte Cristo.
Theory: when taking time to read a classic, there is no reason to settle for an abridged translation (even if it saves five hundred pages). Observation: twelve hundred and forty pages are not realistic reading over Christmas break. Result: six weeks later, I may have just completed the longest book I'll ever read.
I would hate to spoil an expertly woven tale, so I'll say no more, except to leave you with a final quote:
"You must needs have wished to die, to know how good it is to live."