eBook Les Misérables – Z55z.co

Introducing one of the most famous characters in literature, Jean Valjean the noble peasant imprisoned for stealing a loaf of bread Les Mis rables ranks among the greatest novels of all time In it, Victor Hugo takes readers deep into the Parisian underworld, immerses them in a battle between good and evil, and carries them to the barricades during the uprising of 1832 with a breathtaking realism that is unsurpassed in modern prose Within his dramatic story are themes that capture the intellect and the emotions crime and punishment, the relentless persecution of Valjean by Inspector Javert, the desperation of the prostitute Fantine, the amorality of the rogue Th nardier, and the universal desire to escape the prisons of our own minds Les Mis rables gave Victor Hugo a canvas upon which he portrayed his criticism of the French political and judicial systems, but the portrait that resulted is larger than life, epic in scope an extravagant spectacle that dazzles the senses even as it touches the heart. 873 Les Mis rables, Victor HugoLes Mis rables is a French historical novel by Victor Hugo, first published in 1862, that is considered one of the greatest novels of the 19th century In the English speaking world, the novel is usually referred to by its original French title However, several alternatives have been used, including The Miserables, The Wretched, The Miserable Ones, The Poor Ones, The Wretched Poor, The Victims and The Dispossessed Beginning in 1815 and culminating in the 1832 June Rebellion in Paris, the novel follows the lives and interactions of several characters, particularly the struggles of ex convict Jean Valjean and his experience of redemption 1966 2006 1310 1331 1349 1647 1363 1370 1382 9640004189 1384 1387 9789640004180 1388 1390 1391 1392 1386 19 1393 9789643519568 1362 1368 1380 962 1389 9789642200474 1380 1 2 3 4 1390 1395 9786007228982 1393 9786005947434 1388 1389 1392 1395 1342 335 1362 335 1345 480 340 1368 1385 208 9643415155 112 1395 1395 136 1395 399 129 1395 140 47 1368 248 1370 184 1362 237 1368 384 1382 64 1362 177 1370 1. One of the biggest book I ve ever read, and I remembered Mick Foley s warning about a big book A big book is like a serious relationship it requires a commitment Not only that, but there s no guarantee that you will enjoy it, or that it will have a happy ending Kind of like going out with a girl, having to spend time every day with her with absolutely no guarantee of nailing her in the end No thanks Haha Well, I took my chances reading this big book I made my commitment, I spent my time everyday with this book about a month and what do I get Happiness and the joy of reading This book really nailed me, I have my happy ending Woo Hooo Thank you very much for the warning Mister Foley This book is amazing, lengthy in descriptions, compelling storyline and has influenced so many people Breaks my heart into pieces but somehow put it back together.You want to be a better person after reading this book He said to himself that he really had not suffered enough to deserve such radiant happiness, and he thanked God, in the depths of his soul, for having permitted that he, a miserable man, should be so loved by this innocent being Jean Valjean about Cossette Les Mis rables can be translated from the French into The Miserable Ones , The Wretched , The Poor Ones , The Wretched Poor or The Victims So, as you will have concluded, this is not a happy book.In fact, it is the very opposite of fluffy happiness It is a story about the lowest and darkest parts of French society in the first half of the nineteenth century Hugo takes the reader on a 1200 page journey around France and into the lives of criminals, prostitutes, those wasting away under the strain of poverty and he provides food for thought on commonly held ideas about the nature of law, justice, love, religion and politics Not only this, but I can say that not one page of this giant bored me At the end of the day you re another day older And that s all you can say for the life of the poor I feel the need to mention the musical of Les Mis rables and I m going to incorporate some lyrics into this review because why not It s one of my favourite musicals The book is, as is often the case, a much deeper and well developed version of the same story, but I still recognised many of my favourite scenes from the stage production I had actually expected the book to be gentle and subdued than the musical because of the time it was written and to avoid controversy especially as Hugo s opinion of the French judicial system during this time was made very clear but this was not the case Les Mis rables is a nasty, gritty, haunting novel that doesn t fail to stay with you for a long time after putting it down I had a dream my life would be So different from this hell I m living So different now from what it seemed Now life has killed the dream I dreamed It seems wrong to try and simplify the amazing plot of Les Miserables but I have to somehow fit all that greatness into this little review space So, the main plot line of this story is about the ex convict, Jean Valjean, who has been released from prison after serving nineteen years for stealing a loaf of bread and then trying to escape He comes away from all those years doing hard labour with anger running in his veins what kind of society sends a man to that disgusting fate for trying to quell his hunger His thoughts turn to revenge and rebellion he no longer even wants to try playing by the rules of a country which has done this to him Until he is shown an act of kindness beyond his imagination by someone who breaks the cycle of anger and vengeance Lovely ladies ready for the call Standing up or lying down or any way at all Bargain prices up against the wall Taking the little money and the vast amount of kindness he has been given, Jean Valjean slowly becomes an honest and wealthy man who helps those in need But his new found way of life and the respect he has earned becomes threatened one day when the police officer, Javert, starts to recognise him But that is just one story being told here Several stories run parallel to one another throughout this book and thye begin to entwine and as the novel progresses Another is the story of Fantine and her illegitimate daughter Cosette Forced into prostitution in order to feed her child, Fantine is a woman who looks old for her age and no longer has the sparkle of joy in her eye that she enjoyed back when she was allowed to be naive Cosette, meanwhile, is mistreated by the foster family who agree to take care of her while Fantine works in the nearby town Other stories include that of Marius and Eponine, but there are many The city goes to bed And I can live inside my head The above lyrics are from one of the musical s best known songs On My Own and are sung by one of the most fascinating characters of the novel, Eponine Eponine s tale is an old one, one of unrequited love but it is far from cheesy Marius describes her as an unhappy soul and nothing can be much accurate She is a sad, complex, and unfortunate character, which I suppose they all are in Les Mis rables, but Eponine has a special place in my heart But she is also far from weak She has been toughened by life, made ugly by poverty, and she is ferociously independent Yeah, I like her Here they talked of revolution Here it was they lit the flame Here they sang about tomorrow And tomorrow never came This book also chronicles the events leading up to and including the Paris uprising of 1832 and the novel includes themes of revolution It is a deeply thoughtful story that challenged attitudes held at the time in many ways To use one example a court of law was ready to sentence an innocent man to life imprisonment because he was slow and uneducated and therefore couldn t speak eloquently in his defence Perhaps this book is nothing than an entertaining but dark story that Hugo wrote to grip and shock people, but to me this is a highly political novel that makes many statements about law and justice in France during the time period I find it hard to dismiss Hugo s observations of the treatment of those who are poor and unintelligent as anything other than criticisms of society But that is just me I think I can say that you will be affected by this Whether you will thank me for it or not, well, that depends on how easily you tolerate a depressing read But I ve saved my favourite and the most uplifting song for last Do you hear the people sing Singing a song of angry men It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again When the beating of your heart Echoes the beating of the drums There is a life about to start when tomorrow comes youtube link Blog Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube Let s say that I could choose a single book with the guarantee that every man, woman, and child would read it I would not choose my top three favorites, nor would I choose the one whose remnants are permanently inked upon me I would choose this one You argue, the length The time period The cultural barriers It s just another long expounding by some old dead white guy whose type has suffocated literature for centuries Women will be frustrated with poor representation, people who aren t white will be angered by no representation, and everyone will bored to tears Alright, I see that Now, let me explain.Human rights have not been perfected They are as much a work in progress now as they were 150 years ago when this book was first published If you wish to find the book that gives every variation on the theme of humanity its due, it does not exist, and in all likelihood never will With that in mind, it is this book that I choose, as while Victor Hugo may have been limited by the era he grew up in, he did a damn good job in dreaming beyond it He wrote what he knew, but he also wrote what he hoped, and together they form a piece of writing that can mean something to everyone, whatever their life consists of.The book is called The Miserables I have a feeling that it is the blatant despair that this title provokes that has dissuaded publishers from rendering it into English, instead keeping it in that slightly prettier to the ear French form It can even be shortened to that chic and oh so clever Les Mis , as is the norm whenever the play is discussed In that light, when you say that truncated phrase it brings to mind not the triumphant book in its majestic entirety, but the abridged version, or perhaps the even abridged play You think of the story, but you do not think of the author s ideas, ones that he devotes full chapters to and are just as important to this tome as the characters he has sent running through it And this is a tragedy.Is tragedy too harsh a word I don t think so The book itself is one where tragedy heavily outweighs every other emotional aspect, and reducing it to a pittance of itself is flat out disgraceful You have countless flavors of human sorrow worked out here imprisonment, ostracization, slavery, decay of health, decay of morals, decay of life through the brutality of war as well as the slow grind of society s wheels There are also the subtle restrictions on the human spirit, propagated by a firmness of belief that slowly stagnates into constricting bigotry, where humans substitute bias for their reality and confine themselves to a small and mean existence These confines are difficult to escape from than the strongest chains, which may bend and break under pressure, whereas prejudices will turn in on themselves and feed on the opposition It is these barriers that build the barricades, it is these walls that let slip the dogs of war, it is these restrictions that make someone relish petty glories gained in the downfall of their fellow human beings Where a difference of opinion exists, there will be conflict, and Victor Hugo was intimately familiar with the facets of this violent mechanism.He did not want this for the world More specifically, he did not want this for his France, his Paris, his creative beacon that teems with contagious culture and ridiculous fashions to this very day, one that can be silly but is often so very, very brave Like Gavroche the gamin, it thumbs its nose at the world and thinks it slow and stupid, but all the same it loves its fellow human beings, and lives for the times when it can lead them, striding forward towards that thing called Progress Victor Hugo loved the concept of Progress, and he wished that everyone would love it as well In his words Go on, philosophers teach, enlighten, kindle, think aloud, speak up, run joyfully toward broad daylight, fraternize in the public squares, announce the glad tidings, lavish your alphabets, proclaim human rights, sing your Marseillaises, sow enthusiasms, tear off green branches from the oak trees Make thought a whirlwind He sent his characters off with this dream of Progress, of finding a life for themselves, of living in a world that bettered itself by the passing day, where the future was not dreary but vibrant and brimming with unlimited potential Many of them do not succeed Many fall by the wayside, desiccated by sickness, shot down in wars, slain by grief and the resignation that life is not so much better than death Some survive in miserable conditions, as restricted by their morality as by a chain around their neck Some survive only by having stripped their morality as easily as a snake sheds its skin, and in the conditions, who can blame them The weight of society squeezes the supports, and one is so much lighter and flexible without cumbersome thoughts of being good and kind.In all this sadness and life cut short by miserable conditions long before its time, there is still hope Victor Hugo illustrated this in his diverging sections as thoroughly as he did in his main story, as hard as that may be to believe It is true, though For example, his section on the Battle of Waterloo seems no than an endless list of casualties, pages of warfare and tactics, and death, so much death But at the very end, he points out it is not this battle that we remember in so much detail, nor any that came before it We remember literature In Hugo s words Nowadays when Waterloo is merely a click of sabers, above Bl cher Germany has Goethe, and above Wellington England has Byron And what of the other sections There are many, but two that are particularly powerful in their own subtle ways are the sections on argot and the sewers Argot is the language of criminals disguising their speech from the ignorant and the all too interested It is an ever changing labyrinth of slang, idioms, innuendos, wordplay that whips itself into contorted evolutions in its effort to escape the law If this kind of creativity runs rampant on the street, how would it fare if given a warm place to sleep, three meals a day, and a chance to improve its station in life And the sewers When first described, they are dirty, desperate, despicable things that do nothing but spread filth and disease and provide a home for the equally depraved This however was Hugo s vision of how it had been in the past In his time, they were clean and meticulous in their function, as well designed as the streets above and ten times as useful If humans can so improve the lot of that out of sight contraption that carries their shit, imagine what they could do with the parts of life that are meant for open viewing and enjoyment.One last mention Victor Hugo s prose has been accused of excessive flouncing about, rambling sentences that quickly devolve into meaningless lists without form or function beyond the enjoyment of their own existence I say, isn t that last part enough Reading his sentences brings to mind a dance, an endless waltz, to a symphony that builds and builds to a final crescendo, for Hugo is very good at taking his countless paragraphs and using them to reach a final glorious message He could have said it plainly, but it would not have been nearly as powerful without all the exposition just as his point about the memory of Byron outliving the memory of Waterloo would not have been nearly as striking had he not gone through the motions of describing every minute detail of that terrible battle To bring the reader to his level of understanding and to make them feel as much as he does about these things, the prose is essential And frankly, I have yet to come across another author that is as joyous to read as he is, for even while he is going on and on about useless trivia from a time long past, his enthusiasm is contagious He loved what he wrote about, and he wanted you to love it too, progressing sentences growing and triumphant much like the Progress he wished for mankind An ideal where all, I repeat, all are allowed to flourish and grow, developing their own ideas while importantly learning to accept those of others, where a stretch of one s limb doesn t require the injury or confinement of another s.So, read the full version, if you can You re welcome to the other, shorter versions, but read the full one at least once in your lifetime Read the introduction even, for in this particular edition there is a wonderful amount of detail about Victor Hugo s life that brings the book into beautiful focus The introduction also calls the abridged version insufficient, and says It is almost impossible to predict the individual detail, the flashing image or human quirk precisely observed, that will burn its way into a reader s mind for good I cannot agree.And lastly, for the tl dr ers, a summary for what I have said above, which rests within the very first pages of the book So long as there shall exist, by reason of law and custom, a social condemnation which, in the midst of civilization, artificially creates a hell on earth, and complicates with human fatality a destiny that is divine so long as the three problems of the century the degradation of man by the exploitation of his labor, the ruin of woman by starvation, and the atrophy of childhood by physical and spiritual night are not solved so long as, in certain regions, social asphyxia shall be possible in other words, and from a still broader point of view, so long as ignorance and misery remain on earth, there should be a need for books such as this Hauteville House, 1862