45. The Count of Monte Cristo, by Alexandre Dumas. Most people have heard of this story- some have even seen the movie- but few have read it. It's a very long book- thicker, I think, than Anna Karenina. But it is so good. A tale of revenge taken over more than a decade, The Count of Monte Cristo is absolutely thrilling. Despite its length, it isn't a difficult read. The story is fast paced, and every detail is important. While the size may seem intimidating, please, don't let it deter you; read The Count of Monte Cristo as soon as you can lay your hands on it.