The book is a bit slow at first but it becomes clear it needed to be like that to develop the story of the Count and all the people he encountered in his life. A story of friendships and the importance and ease of them.
“Looking back, it seems to me that there are people who play an essential role at every turn. And I don’t just mean the Napoleons who influence the course of history. I mean men and women who routinely appear at critical junctures in the progress of art or commerce, or the evolution of ideas-as if Life itself has summoned them once again to help fulfill its purpose