Monday, October 29, 2012

Book review: Les Miserables

A few weeks ago I celebrated the accomplishment of finishing reading Les Miserables by posting it as my Facebook status.  I thought it was definitely an accomplishment that needed to be celebrated because 1) it was the longest book I've ever read and 2) it took such a long time to make it through.  But both of those things make Les Miserables sound as though it's a tough book to get through and while it did feel that way at times, I have to say that I really, really enjoyed it.

Image found here.
While it felt long because there were some extremely descriptive parts that had very little to do with the plot and seemed to drag on and on (I don't think I'll ever need to read another word about the Battle of Waterloo), I actually liked that Les Miserables was a book that I was invested in for a long time.  I felt like I really got to know and care about all of the characters in a way that I haven't with many other books.

I originally started reading the book so that I could see the movie that's coming out on Christmas day.  When I started reading, I knew almost nothing about the storyline.  Though I'm a huge fan of musicals, I've never really liked Les Mis and I haven't actually listened to all of it or seen it performed.  The fact that I didn't know what was going to happen ahead of time kept me extremely interested.  The book had so many twists and turns that kept me guessing at what was going to happen next.  (And also so many characters that I had a hard time keeping some of them straight.)  I actually got so excited about what was going on in the book a few times that I started explaining the plot to Andrew, which he tolerated remarkably well considering most of my plot explanations took about 15 minutes...

Overall, I would definitely read this book again and recommend it to anyone who's willing to commit to reading it.  I will admit that there are several parts that I found incredibly boring, but I was able to make it through those parts because I knew that something spectacular was sure to happen after that.  And I was not disappointed.


  1. congrats on finishing! I felt the same way (I read it a few years back). It's one of my all-time faves, though I have to admit to skipping a dozen pages here and there about the layout of the parisian sewers!!

    excited for the movie!

    1. Everyone I've talked to has complained about the sewer part, but I thought Waterloo was much more painful!


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