Best Of Victor Hugo by Victor Hugo
Les Miserables - read by respected audio reader Michael Jayston - Hugo's novel, also a famous musical, follows a convict named Jean Valjean, who is attempting to atone for his crimes by reforming his life. His love for his adopted daughter, Cosette, and his protection of her, serves as one means of redemption. The story examines revolutionary Paris through its charismatic, bustling and vivid characters. They provide a comprehensive and compelling picture of the uncertainty and upheaval of their time at the end of the eighteenth century.The Hunchback of Notre Dame - read by Fawlty Towers star Andrew Sachs - Quasimodo is abandoned as a baby on the steps of Notre Dame. He becomes bellringer there, and in order to hide his twisted and grotesque physique from staring Parisians, he spends his life virtually imprisoned within the towering Gothic landmark. Esmerelda, a gypsy girl who dances in the square below, becomes the object of his affections when she shows him a small kindness, although she is also desired by many others. Ultimately a reflection on self-image and the cruelness of society, The Hunchback of Notre Dame is a tragic and moving tale, where beauty is not necessarily what it first appears.