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Les Miserables (Stepping Stones) (1995)

Les Miserables (Stepping Stones) (1995)
4.25 of 5 Votes: 4
067986668X (ISBN13: 9780679866688)
random house
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Les Miserables (Stepping Stones) (1995)
Les Miserables (Stepping Stones) (1995)

About book: An age appropriate accounting of this fascinating story that uses concrete language to communicate the key plot points. There are some slight literary flourishes, though they are inconsistently done. Most notably, the book begins as if it is a letter written from Valjean to Cosette at the time of his death, but the author loses the first person voice several times. In addition, the final scenes are somewhat convoluted by this lack of consistency in switching from Valjean to an omniscient narrator. There are probably other editions for kids that are better, but this is the one we have, and it's adequate. An enjoyable single sitting read for a mama who loves the story, and a joy to introduce to our youngsters.

I will start out by saying this book was amazing. I tried to read the original "Les Miserables" but it was extremely difficult, considering I'm only thirteen. So I got on the Barnes and Noble website and ordered "Les Miserables (A Stepping Stone Book)" and I am so glad I did. The plot begins by introducing the main character Jean Valjean. He is writing a story to his daughter Cossette. The rest of the book except for the end is what the story he is writing says. The whole book is a giant, descriptive adventure. I felt as if I was living it. Even though it is a simplified version of the original, it leaves out no emotions or details. It also has some historical events in it. Trust me, you won't be bored.
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The number of times I put the book down for a few minutes to think about feelings or thoughts the writings of Hugo raised were uncountable. Written a generation after it was set Hugo gives an account into France of 1820 onwards which is drawn with enthralling characters and a very articulate knowledge of the issues of the time. Hugo must have been somewhat interested in social issues of the time and there are many parallels in human life between 180 years ago and now. Also worth noting that classic writings which originated in different languages are more accessible because they exist in modern translation. No ye olde speake to deale withe hereee.
Les Miserables is my favorite Broadway production, so I figured I'd be doing myself a disservice NOT to read the book.[return]The book is not very different from the musical; just a great deal longer and denser.[return]I do not however regret devoting so many hours to this book. It was a fascinating look at life in nineteenth century France and it had many fascinating pieces omitted from the musical. My favorite bits excluded from the musical:[return]- Marius's history[return]- Jean and Cosette's time at the convent[return]- Javert's perspectives on everything
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