The acclaimed author Tom Reiss discusses his new book, The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo (Crown, 2012), with Joseph Planta.
|The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo by Tom Reiss (Crown, 2012).
Click to buy this book from Amazon.ca: The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo
Text of introduction by Joseph Planta:
I am Planta: On the Line, in Vancouver at TheCommentary.ca.
The writer Tom Reiss joins me now. He’s got a new book out, The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo. It tells the story of Alex Dumas, the father of Alexandre Dumas, the writer of The Three Musketeers and The Count of Monte Cristo. Alex Dumas, the father, was born in Haiti to a French nobleman and a black slave. In his own time he was famous as a dashing swordsman, a military commander and a hero of the French Revolution. However, his rival Napoleon Bonaparte sought his erasure from French history. He dies when Alexandre is but four, yet the impact on his young son’s life is clear as he inspires heroes in his son’s later works. It’s a really fascinating story and I’ll get Mr. Reiss to tell us how he came upon Dumas the father, what he learned, why we should read about him, as well as discuss race and what part that played in the Dumas story. The website for more is at www.tomreiss.com. Previous books by Tom Reiss include Fuhrer-Ex and The Orientalist, which was an international bestseller and a critical hit. This new book is published by Crown. Please welcome to the Planta: On the Line program, Tom Reiss; Mr. Reiss, good morning.