I bought this book the second time I went to England. I had gone without a book and was desirous of something fat, classic and a must read. And it is a must. I count this book as one of my favorites. I read it in three or four days (and it wasn't abridged). Just to let you know how hooked I was on it. I don't know how to expound enough as to the details about it . I will just keep singing it's praise. If you enjoyed the movie, I insist you read it as it is a million times superior to that of any film can convey it. There are one or two chapters that seem irrelevant to the story as the one is about the Battle of Waterloo and one on the Paris sewer system. However they are interesting historical anecdotes and do tie into the background and actions of some of the characters.