Customer Reviews for

Man in the Iron Mask (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

Who was the man in the iron mask?

In life, he was sentenced to a cruel fate--in death, he would become a legend. Alexandre Dumas tells the tale of the mysterious man who was imprisoned in the Bastille starting in the 168o's until his death some thirty years later. During that time his face had been hidd...
In life, he was sentenced to a cruel fate--in death, he would become a legend. Alexandre Dumas tells the tale of the mysterious man who was imprisoned in the Bastille starting in the 168o's until his death some thirty years later. During that time his face had been hidden by an iron mask. While his identity remains a mystery, there are some tantalizing clues which might remove the mask from the man. Most prisoners of the French prison were usually important people who had fallen out of favor with King Louis XIV. Given strict orders by the king, the Musketeers were to kill him if he removed his mask. He ate in the mask, slept in the mask, and eventually died in the mask. In 1717, Voltaire was imprisoned at the Bastille. According to him, the man in the iron mask was around 60 when he died, and bore a striking resemblance to a very famous aristocrat. Of course, the most famous aristocrat in France at that time was King Louis XIV, who was also in his 60's. Another prisoner at the Bastille, Joseph de Lagrange, asserted that Benigne d'Auvergne de Saint, the governor of Sainte Marguerite, treated the mystery man deferentially and referred to him as 'prince'. Stories about the mysterious prisoner are conflicting. Some state that he wore a mask of velvet, not iron. Evidence has surfaced saying that the prisoner was buried under the name M. de Marchiel. And later, a death certificate giving the prisoner's name as Marchioly and his age of 45 was found. Another states, that in 1789 Frederic Grimm, a famous writer, claimed that a valet had revealed to him that Louis XIV had an identical twin. And that Louis XIII, feared the brothers would grow up to fight over the throne, so he sent the second-born baby away to be raised in secret. The boy was taken into a nobleman's household and treated with great respect, but he was never told who he really was. As he grew up, he saw a portrait of King Louis XIV and guessed the truth. He was immediately arrested, and spent the rest of his life as the Man in the Iron Mask. Many people believed this to be false, and believe it was elaborated and embroidered by Alexandre Dumas as the years passed. It has been said that when the Bastille was stormed by a revolutionary mob, the prince's skeleton was discovered, still wearing his iron mask. Of course, there is no record that this actually happened.

posted by Anonymous on January 28, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Very heavy reading!

If you are looking for this book to be anything like either of the last two movie versions, you will be sadly disappointed! I found the book to be long, the storyline to be convoluted and difficult to follow, and the ending to be not what was expected.

posted by 7107317 on April 2, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2014

    Warriors den

    ~Blazeclan

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 20, 2014

    Ace

    He nodded, disappearing.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2014

    Steam

    *Runs out.*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2013

    To PathClan

    Eh... hi. I'm Fadingstar's stepbrother in real life. Just lettin' you guys know that he was in a car accident and won't be on for a while. So... whoever is deputy or whatever should probably step up. *le disapooftion*

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 10, 2011

    Good book bad formating.

    The books great, but definately go for the barnes and noble edition. There's a lot of errors in the text, and you can't change the formatting--cokor,font etc.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2004

    The Man in the Iron Mask

    This book is a pretty good book. You never know just how it's going to end until you get to the very sentence on the very last page. It has so many twists and turns that it keeps you wondering until you get to the very last sentence. It's a great book that always makes you wonder just what is going to happen next. It's one of those books that you never want to put down, you just want to keep reading. Although this book is great in those terms, there are still some bones to pick with it. It always looks hopeless for the good guys to win and it is. As with any other book you just know the good guys hust have to win so it can end with, 'Happily Ever After.' Well, it's not that way for this book. By the time you get to the end something horrible has happened to every good person in the whole book except for Aramis. Just to make that worse, every bad character in the book ends up living 'Happily Ever After.' They either stay living, get rich or end up ruling over something. You end up thinking, 'Well, there has to be a sequel to make everything better...' but there's not. Every good person is left so bad there is no way it can all be fixed in a sequel. When you finish the book you're left empty and depressed. Overall, if you don't get depressed easily and you don't like fairytales this book is for you. It really is a great book and I encourage you to read it but just don't expect a happy ending.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2003

    Musketeers become...old...and fat...

    I read this book mainly because of the man in the iron mask; not really to read a number 2 in the musketeer's series. The plot sounded good, though I was slightly dissapointed. It was mainly centered on the afterwards of the musketeers; how they all became fat and old, Dumas did not put into detail their characters. Dumas must have liked his first book so much that he decided to write another, and suddenly add some cheap plot into it. Sure it is thirlling, but what I want in character development, and this factor is lacking. Dumas, do us all a favor and make the man in the iron mask a seperate book from the 2nd three musketeer novel...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2002

    Not all it is said to be....

    A good book but at the same time no climax and ending was bad...it isnt all it is said to be...but a god read....

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    Posted November 1, 2008

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    Posted June 10, 2013

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    Posted November 2, 2010

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    Posted December 29, 2011

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