The Last Cavalier

  • by Alexandre Dumas
  • Narrated by Simon Prebble
  • 35 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The story of France from the Renaissance to the 19th century, as Dumas vibrantly retold it in his numerous enormously popular novels, has long been absent one vital, richly historical era: the Age of Napoleon. But no longer. Now dynamically, in a tale of family honor and undying vengeance, of high adventure and heroic derring-do, The Last Cavalier fills that gap.The last cavalier is Count de Sainte-Hermine, Hector, whose elder brothers and father have fought and died for the Royalist cause during the French Revolution. For three years Hector has been languishing in prison when, in 1804, on the eve of Napoleon's coronation as emperor of France, he learns what is to be his due. Stripped of his title, denied the honour of his family name as well as the hand of the woman he loves, he is freed by Napoleon on the condition that he serve in the imperial forces. So it is in profound despair that Hector embarks on a succession of daring escapades as he courts death fearlessly. Yet again and again he wins glory, against brigands, bandits, the British, boa constrictors, sharks, tigers and crocodiles. At the Battle of Trafalgar, it is Hector's bullet that fells Nelson. But however far his adventures take him, from Burma's jungles to the wilds of Ireland, his destiny lies always with his father's enemy, Napoleon.

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What the Critics Say

It is rousing, big spirited, its action sweeping across oceans and continents, its hero gloriously indomitable. This newly discovered last novel of Alexandre Dumas, lost for 125 years in the archives of the National Library in Paris, completes the Dumas oeuvre.
"Absolutely wonderful....Alexandre Dumas remains, now as ever, the Napoleon of storytellers." - (Washington Post)
"James Bond, Indiana Jones, and many others owe a deep debt to Dumas, who stuffs his tales with thrilling exploits and exotic locales. No one with a pulse will be able to resist Dumas's lost classic." (Christian Science Monitor)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Dumas' uncompleted novel

What is it about many 19th century novelists that they could write such gripping and well researched historical novels? The fascinating thing about this recently rediscovered novel of Alexandre Dumas set in the Napoleonic period, is its attention to historical detail and every chapter gives insights into the political and social tensions of that turbulent period. An excellent history lesson and a great story-line superbly narrated by Simon Prebble. And what a brilliant touch of Dumas to portray the hero as the french-man responsible for killing Nelson at the Battle of Trafalgar. Pity that Dumas died without completing the novel, but even without an end worth every one of the 35+ hours in the car spent listening. This audio-book has motivated me to now go back and listen to the other Dumas novels that I first encountered as a teenager nearly 60 years ago.
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- Peter Lees Pearson

a word of warning

My warning is: This book begins with about a two hour and fifteen minute introduction in which the author justifies the historical accuracy of his writings and especially in defense of The Last Cavalier. During this portion many aspects of the story will be shared before hand and for those who want a surprise you may want to skip the introduction. They do attempt to warn you about the disclosure, but do not give you any indication of how long it takes to skip it. Also, due to the fact that in many instances the author is reading from letters dealing with the story, it is not always obvious when the introduction ends and the novel begin.
Additionally, this novel is not finished by Alexandre Dumas because he dies before it is completed. The ending of the novel is continued by another writer who, in my opinion, does an excellent job of wrapping up the story. The narrator is very good and the story line is an action packed Dumas tale, in character with his previous works.
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- Mary

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-29-2009
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.