Les Miserables

Les Miserables
Victor Hugo
classic
4 stars
1463 pages

man, what to write. This was the complete unabridged version. The story was great. A convict is given a second chance by a priest and goes on to make millions and help a whole area in France. He is put back in jail. Once he escapes again, he finds the daughter of a woman who was under his care. He takes care of her until she gets married. All the time being pursued by a police officer with a vendetta against Valjean. Ends with the officer dead, Valjean dying and his secret safe. A good story.

Now, to the “unabridged” part of this book. Hugo wrote almost twice as much about whatever he felt like instead of the plot. Convents, sewers, the battle of Waterlou and many other unrelated subjects. I would have to recommend an abridged version to anyone. I wish I could hit Hugo for wasting so much of my time with such trivial drivel!

The Hunchback of Notre Dame

The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Victor Hugo
classic
3 stars
586 pages

This was a very tough start. Hugo goes on and on and ON about architecture. He gives a whole chapter over to describing Paris, another chapter describing the Notre Dame Chapel and another one that waxed philosophical about architecture. Once you got passed those though, it was a truly Gothic tragedy. A mother and daughter separated 15 years ago. A Priest dedicated to knowledge. A terribly deformed man. 3 different aspect of love-casual lust, all consuming lust, selfless love. 3 different men, 1 woman. All but one die in the end. Sad, to see a man consumed by his lust, to see a selfless spirit trapped in a fallen body, to see a woman throw her love away on a libertine.

Get rid of all the boring blabberings on architecture and this would be a fantastic read, a 4 star, possibly a 4.5.