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Les Misérables by Victor Hugo

Les Misérables (1862)

by Victor Hugo

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
20,132269124 (4.27)992
Story of Valjean, the ex-convict who rises against all odds from galley slave to mayor, and the fanatical police inspector who dedicates his life to recapturing Valjean.
  1. 200
    The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas père (VictoriaPL)
  2. 80
    Silas Marner by George Eliot (ncgraham)
    ncgraham: Both great classics, with orphaned girls and themes of redemption.
  3. 91
    War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (chrisharpe)
  4. 81
    The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: As much a story about the trials of individuals as a sweeping portrait and critique of an era.
  5. 61
    The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy (ncgraham)
    ncgraham: Both stories of men who commit public crimes ... and yet the outcomes are very different.
  6. 30
    The Life of Lazarillo de Tormes by Anónimo (albavirtual)
  7. 30
    The Man Who Laughs by Victor Hugo (raton-liseur)
    raton-liseur: Des thèmes similaires, dans une prose étourdissante et avec une ironie mordante.
  8. 20
    The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo (CorinneT)
  9. 10
    Doctor Thorne by Anthony Trollope (morryb)
    morryb: Both speak to the struggle of adopting a child and then letting them up later.
  10. 10
    Island Beneath the Sea by Isabel Allende (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Cast of interconnected characters are subjected to historical pressures through years-worth of events surrounding a revolution. Issues of paternity and social justice.
  11. 10
    The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni (chrisharpe)
  12. 10
    Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens (morryb)
    morryb: Both have a main character who adopts a daughter and the struggle of letting her go.
Elevenses (178)
Europe (11)
Romans (19)

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» See also 992 mentions

English (244)  French (8)  Spanish (6)  Norwegian (2)  Dutch (2)  Italian (2)  Finnish (2)  Portuguese (1)  Aragonese Spanish (1)  Piratical (1)  All languages (269)
Showing 1-5 of 244 (next | show all)
A classic among classics.

I'd been meaning to read this ever since... what, the '80's? Okay. So I'm a bit late. No Andrew Lloyd Webber, either. And what a beast this novel is! Almost 1500 pages, full of grand sweeping expositions on War from Napoleon's exploits and downfall to the second French Revolution, diatribes on the language of convicts, the dealings of wine-houses, sewers, and no less than a dozen different social injustices of the time...

And yet, the horrible misery of the novel, some might say a grand depression from the outside and in for poor Jean Valjean, is rightfully a romance of epic proportions.

The misery isn't just his, of course. A wide tapestry of miserable creatures inhabits this novel. Some might say the miserable is all of France. They're all a mixture of the execrable and the divine. Full of heart and joy and committing suicide in the next breath. One might say that Paris was... perhaps is... bipolar. Manic and depressive.

As long as we go by the events and the backgrounds within these pages, of course.

Bigger than life and real for all that, this is probably one of those monsters of a novel that should be read and digested over a long period of time. That's not to say it's difficult to read at all. It's just long. So much happens it's like enjoying a better rendition of Shakespeare's King Henry the Sixth (in the entire) mixed with a milder Dostoyevski's Crime and Punishment, adding a comedic romance with a little of Dicken's underworld horror shows, then topping it off with a dispassionate review of history with a massive side-order of satire.

Can we really pigeonhole this work?

No. Not really. It has wide swaths of everything.

And that's why it is a classic among classics. ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
3.5 stars.

Oh boy, I am quite emotional - this was a long journey and at various points throughout, I was convinced there was no way I could actually read this whole thing this year, and there's no way I could've made it without the audiobook.

There are parts of this that are a drag - especially the long-winded detours to the Battle of Waterloo, convents in 18/19th century France, and of course the famed section on the Paris sewer system - but other parts were dramatic, exciting, and just plain fun to read (or well, listen to).

Hugo's take on things is often fascinating - and I was genuinely surprised by just how many of the issues discussed in this novel are still relevant today. One would think we'd have made it past these things in our modern day and age (and Hugo certainly was optimistic about the future), but yet here we are.

I would definitely recommend this to everyone, but I firmly believe that an abridged version will also do the job. ( )
  j_tuffi | May 30, 2020 |
This has to be at the top of my all time favorite books. I have seen the musical and this makes me appreciate it because I have so much more background detail.
( )
  Phaer1 | May 15, 2020 |
in five volumes
  Matthew_Erskine | Apr 25, 2020 |
INMENSA novela sobre la Francia postrevolucionaria, sobre el bien y el mal, la afrenta y el perdón, sobre la buena estrella y la mala suerte, sobre el castigo y la redención. Sobre el ser humano. Es grandiosa y es bella. Absolutamente recomendable. ( )
  Remocpi | Apr 22, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 244 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (301 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hugo, Victorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bayard, Émile-AntoineIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Beaumont, Pierre desecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Denny, NormanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Donougher, ChristineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Guidall, GeorgeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hapgood, Isabel FlorenceTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keeping, CharlesIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Picchi, MarioTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rose, JulieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sabard, Marie-Hélènesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Serdav, ManuelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thirlwell, AdamIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tombs, RobertIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ward, LyndIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilbour, Charles E.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wraxall, LascellesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Solange kraft der Gesetze und Sitten eine soziale Verdammnis existiert, die auf künstlichem Weg, inmitten einer hoch entwickelten Zivilisation, Höllen schafft und noch ein von Menschen gewolltes Fatum zu dem Schicksal, das von Gott kommt, hinzufügt ;
First words
In the Year 1815 Monseigneur Charles-François-Bienvenu Myriel was Bishop of Digne.
So long as there shall exist, by virtue of law and custom, decrees of damnation pronounced by society, artificially creating hells amid the civilization of the earth, and adding the element of human fate to divine destiny; so long as the three great problems of the century - the degradation of man through pauperism, the corruption of woman through hunger, the crippling of children through lack of light - are unsolved; so long as social asphyxia is possible in any part of the world - in other words, and with a still wider significance, so long as ignorance and poverty exist on earth, books of the nature of Les Miserables cannot fail to be of use. (Preface)
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This work represents complete editions. Please do not combine with the first volume of multi-volume editions.
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Book description
Ce prost sunt! îşi zise Jean Valjean. Nu-l remarcase încă şi i-l arăt chiar eu.
O, naivitate a bătrânilor! Înţelepciune a copiilor!
Haiku summary
A fugitive man
gets a new name and new life.
He adopts a girl.


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Penguin Australia

3 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0140444300, 1846140498, 0141392606


An edition of this book was published by HighBridge.

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HighBridge Audio

An edition of this book was published by HighBridge Audio.

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Tantor Media

2 editions of this book were published by Tantor Media.

Editions: 1400102758, 1400109000

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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