I'm not quite done with this, but I've been thinking about it a lot the last couple days, so it seems like an appropriate time to review it.
It's takeI'm not quite done with this, but I've been thinking about it a lot the last couple days, so it seems like an appropriate time to review it.
It's taken me a very long time to read this book, and although it's a long book, I don't think that's the primary problem. For me, I needed quiet and patience to read this book, and those are two things that can be difficult to find at the same time. Long sentences, long paragraphs, and long digressions all slowed my reading pace drastically. I think I was also slowed by the fact that I've seen Les Miserables on Broadway, so I knew the basics of the story. Yes, it's the reason I decided to read the book in the first place, but it also destroyed a lot of the suspense of the story for me.
Still, this is really a great book, and it probably deserves more than the three stars that I'm giving it. Sure, the depth that Hugo insists on going into can be frustrating, but it also adds a sense of place and of history that is impressive. There are also some really wonderful characters, too many for me to list, although I will say that my favorite was Gavroche. As for the story itself, sweeping would be an appropriate description, I think. The thing that impressed me the most about this book, though, was the compassion that Victor Hugo wrote it with. His love for his country and the people that inhabit it are palpable, even when they both are less than perfect, and it's that love that made reading the book really rewarding for me.
Edit: OK, so I've finished now, and I've decided I will stand by my 3 stars. Yes, it's a great book, but since we're talking about subjective enjoyment, 3 is the best I can do. I found the ending a little frustrating and a lot depressing, even though I was expecting it. Still, I definitely don't regret reading this. It was certainly an interesting experience.
"The book the reader has now before his eyes--from one end to the other, in its whole and in its details, whatever the omissions, the exceptions, or the faults--is the march from evil to good, from injustice to justice, from the false to the true, from night to day, from appetite to conscience, from rottenness to life, from brutality to duty, from Hell to Heaven, from nothingness to God. Starting point: matter; goal: the soul. Hydra is at the beginning, angel at the end." page 1242...more
As a student of Japanese, I found this book really interesting. At quite a few points during the book I found myself nodding along with the author's pAs a student of Japanese, I found this book really interesting. At quite a few points during the book I found myself nodding along with the author's points or learning things that I didn't know before. My only possible complaint was that at times the author would break down certain media in great detail. Having never seen or heard this media, the breakdowns did drag a bit, but it wasn't enough to detract from my enjoyment of the book. Recommended for people who are interested in the Japanese language and culture. ...more
I recently bought all 36 volumes of this manga at Boston Anime, so I'll be working my way through this series! I've been watching the anime and am almI recently bought all 36 volumes of this manga at Boston Anime, so I'll be working my way through this series! I've been watching the anime and am almost finished with that, but I'm sure the manga goes way past that, so I'm really excited. This first volume introduces Sunako and the other main characters. If you've seen the anime, it's pretty close to that, but more serious. The anime is seriously crazy at times, so I kind of appreciated the more serious feel to this. (Don't get me wrong, things are still pretty crazy. It just feels a bit less so.) I will say, the adjustment to the art style is pretty rough, but it's growing on me. I feel like the manga also has a bit more of a romance feel than the anime, even so early on, which is nice. I actually ship Kyohei and Sunako pretty hard. I'm really excited to make some progress on this! ...more