The depth of the characters.
Bishop Myriel, his actions set the story into motion and changes Valjean into someone worth admiring.
If you could find an audiobook with the digressions cut out i would very much recommend listening to it.
Listening was sooooo much easier than reading the book! If one is going to tackle Les Miserables, I highly recommend listening to it! I even enjoyed the 45 minute description of the sewer system of Paris, and the details of Waterloo!
Jean Val Jean was of course the favorite - he is the hero!
I suppose my favorite scene was when Marius figured out who saved him, and he and Cosette went to Jean Val Jean.
Mercy given, victorious, and passed along...
I loved the discourse on priest at the beginning. Others have said he didn't have much to do with the story - but I disagree. He had EVERYTHING to do with the life of Jean Val Jean. He changed the course of history for him, and I am sure for many others!
I loved the voice of Frederick Davidson! Great voices, expression, and pace!
As a story, this is a classic for a reason
Jean Valjean, Javert and Thenadier were all excellently portrayed by Davidson
Made me feel joy, sadness, and every emotion in-between. Masterfully written.
The story is just fantastic and Frederick Davidson did a wonderful job reading the story. It might take a few pages to get used to him, but once you do, you'll enjoy it very much!
Just the reader to relax and give a more flowy feel
I'm only knew to audible books so probably not a good example for reviews yet...
The over pronunciation of words at end of most sentences - more even flow.
I LOVE the movie of this book (2012 edition). I believe I might enjoy reading the story. However, the narrator has completely turned me off to the idea of listening to it.
Les Miserables the movie to me is similar to Atonement, where the characters make life changing choices that affect everyone around them and contain large epiphany moments.
Mr. Davidson sounds pompous and bored when he reads this story. It is hard to get past this and be interested in the story when the narrator sounds bored. Furthermore, his breathing and page turning are distracting and irritating.
I do love the story of Les Miserables, and will purchase a paper copy to read. Hopefully I can enjoy it that way.
1 or 2; Don Quixote being the only other that compares.
The redemption of JVJ.
Hell no! It's 57 hrs. long plus I had to pause it throughout just so I could ponder about what was said.Way too dense for one sitting. What kind of question is that?
Careful because it will ruin the story in the play/movie. There is so much pertinent information omitted that it might make you sick how much the remove.
Yes, mostly because of so many names and places that are difficult to pronounce.
Too many to name one. Probably ValJean.
He was great with Anna Karenina, and he just grabs your attention.
I'm Robert's wife, a retired physician and homeschool mom whose grown kids now love history, literature, sci-fi, fantasy, historical fiction
I've listened to Davidson a lot (even War and Peace) because I like long classics and sometimes he's the only way to go. I find him pretty annoying, and my daughter dislikes listening to him worse than I do. But in this book he was less annoying than in others. The story is phenomenal. I've read it, listened to it more than once, seen the musical three times and would go back again in a heartbeat. Don't miss this book. There is a new translation out by Julie Rose--I'm looking forward to giving it a try too.
History - although telling the story of an individual's life, Les Miserables also paints a detailed and expansive picture of an era in French history. Not being a student of history, I cannot attest to the level of historical accuracy. However, the novel presents a detailed picture of the political, social, and moral climate of the time (1789–1832). The author presents a number of detailed and at times lengthy digressions into various of these topics which often seem to have only passing relevance to the action of the story, but do act to set a mood and context. Hugo is not just telling the story of Jean Valjean, he is illustrating fundamental concepts of the human condition, some specific to his time, but some timeless as well...and this is probably why this novel holds the place it does in the world of classic literature. Redemption - it seems that the concept of redemption was not considered in the criminal justice system, or even in the moral philosophy, of the time. Jean Valjean pays for the theft of bread - to feed his sister's starving children - with nearly two decades of incarceration (extended by a number of foolish attempts at escape). Once his term is served, however, it seems that society continues the punishment and virtually leaves him no choice but to return to a life crime. At the beginning, Jean Valjean is not a noble person crushed by circumstance, he is basically a simple minded brute. As his story progresses, however, he does receive a small degree of respect and faith which is the spark which sets him on the path to consciously redeeming himself through service to others.Tragedy - for all the good that Jean Valjean ultimately performs, it seems that society will not recognize the possibility of redemption and he must fight and flee the past for his entire life. It seems that for every step forward he takes he is beaten down and risks losing all the good he has done. The saddest part, is that being a product of this society, he cannot seem to forgive himself either. For all the good he accomplishes, he cannot seem to grant himself forgiveness for those crimes he has committed so long ago.
At this time I would have to say that Les Miserables is somewhat unique in my "reading" experience. It's been quite a while since I've had the opportunity to enjoy literature for literature's sake, so I don't have a lot of fresh references upon which to draw. That being said, this is a great book against which future readings will be measured.
While there are moments in this book that moved me by the ability of the human spirit to overcome, and even soar in the face of overwhelming oppression, the overall reaction was often one of sadness. Sadness for both the individual sufferings of Jean Valjean and other characters in the story and sadness for the overall society painted by the book. While it is good to see that we (as in humanity) have moved forward, there are still unfortunately too many parallels to be found in the world of today. At the same time, the book is a strong reminder that struggles are only lost by surrender, despite external outcomes, victory is of the spirit and is achieved by how the struggle is faced.
Poor quality - I hate to hear the narrator taking a breath every few seconds and it would have been nice to have a narrator without an English accent reading a French story.