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Les Misérables (Modern Library Classics) Paperback – July 14, 2009
Frequently Bought Together
“A new translation by Julie Rose of Hugo’s behemoth classic that is as racy and current and utterly arresting as it should be.” —The Buffalo News (editor’s choice)
“Lively, dramatic, and wonderfully readable.” —Alison Lurie, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Foreign Affairs
“Splendid . . . The magnificent story [is] marvelously captured in this new unabridged translation.”—Denver Post
“Rich and gorgeous. This is the [translation] to read. . . . If you are flying, just carry it under your arm as you board, or better still, rebook your holiday and go by train, slowly, page by page.” —Jeanette Winterson, The Times, London
From the Inside Flap
A THRILLING NEW TRANSLATION BY JULIE ROSE Sensational, dramatic, packed with rich excitement and filled with the sweep and violence of human passions, Les Misérables is one of the greatest adventures stories ever told. It is a novel peopled by colourful characters from the nineteenth-century Parisian underworld; the street children, the prostitutes and the criminals. In telling the story of escaped convict Jean Valjean, and his efforts to reform his ways and care for the little orphan girl he rescues from a life of cruelty, Victor Hugo drew attention to the plight of the poor and oppressed. Les Miserables is a masterful detective story, a comic and tragic story of romance and revolution and, ultimately, a tale of redemption and hope.
WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY ADAM THIRLWELL --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
If you are like me and have read the reviews on Amazon before tackling this gigantic novel then I do not need to go on about how great this book is and what it is all about.
Also, if like me, you are a beginner in the world of fine literature, the following are a few tips I would give to those who haven't read Les Miserables. Here goes:
1. Get the book and do not be intimidated by its size. It is huge but the chapters are not very long and this version is made so that it is easier to understand. If you compare several different translation, you will see the difference.
2. Make sure to buy the Signet Classic version translated by Lee Fahnestock and Norman MacAfee (ISBN 0-451-52526-4). One reviewer said that this was the best version available and I totally agree with that. This is the new version based on the 19th Century Charles E. Wilbour translation. I had another version of this book and this one is by far the only completely unabridged paperback and also more reader-friendly.
3. Have a dictionary handy as there are many words that need translation.
4. Knowing the French language/history is a bonus but not required. Although knowing about French history will make some of his detailed descriptions of France not so tedious. In one chapter entitled "In the Year 1817" he talks about what was going on in France in that time period and although I read every single word, I must confess I was confused because it is all based on the history of France in that year of which I know nothing.Read more ›
But the best comparison is made by reading:
here's Wilbour from the beginning of Part Two, Book Four:
"Forty years ago, the solitary pedestrian who ventured into the unknown region of La Salpetriere and went up along the Boulevard as far as the Barrier d'italie, reached certain points where it might be said that Paris had disappeared. It was no longer a solitude, for there were people passing; it was not the country for there were houses and streets. It was not a city, the streets had ruts in them, like highways, and grass grew along their borders; it was not a village, the houses were too lofty. What was it then? It was an inhabited place where there was nobody. It was a desert place where there was somebody. It was a boulevard of the great city, a street of Paris, wilder at night than a forest and gloomier by day than a graveyard. It was the old quarter of the horse-market."
Denny's version of the same passage
" A stroller forty years ago penetrating beyond the Salpetriere by way of the Boulevard de l'Hopital as far as the Barrierr d'italie, would have come to a region where Paris seemed to disappear.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I liked how this book had so many interesting but not important characters. It helped clarify the book well. ThanksPublished 2 days ago by JOSHUA J JONES
This information is about the quality of the book. The first 2-300 pages were stuck together with about 30 pages at a time, then would repeat pages stuck again along the outer... Read morePublished 6 days ago by Thalia
This is one of my favorite books. I've read a lot, but this is one of the ones that I always wind up coming back to, whether for reference or just for fun. Read morePublished 7 days ago by hannah
les miserables by victor hugo - wow - long book, great moive with huge jackman is wonderful - its a book on the boy who stole a loaf of bread to save his sister and her family from... Read morePublished 7 days ago by Amazon Customer
I know this is a classic, but it's just too long and dull for me. I quit after Part I. I just couldn't face the thought of wading through the rest of it, hoping it would get... Read morePublished 13 days ago by Saul