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Tag Archives: Classic Literature

Les Misérables

Les MisérablesLes Misérables by Victor Hugo
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

How can anyone give just three stars to a classic like Les Misérables? When it takes an avid reader almost six weeks to slog through it. Yes, I love the story! Who doesn’t? But the writing is not only old-world writing, it’s positively sloggy. For instance, there are four or five chapters that simply describe the sewer system in Paris and its history. Okay, Jean Valjean must walk through the sewer, but we don’t need chapters of description. (Tell us what time it is, don’t tell us how to build a watch.) There were also multiple chapters describing the street talk of the homeless youth of Paris. And – no – the reader didn’t need to know any of it. So while the story is excellent and the characters are fascinating, digging them out from amid the dross is a flat-out chore. Even for me … and I love reading the classics.

Now I’m ready to watch the new PBS Masterpiece Theater adaptation and I’m sure I will positively love it!

 
 

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Silas Marner

Silas MarnerSilas Marner by George Eliot
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A few weeks ago, I saw a copy of “Silas Marner” on the shelf in a used bookstore for $2.00. I hadn’t read it since high school when I wasn’t particularly thrilled with it. But … I wanted to read it again. And I enjoyed it.

It’s not anything like today’s writing. It’s 100% telling from the omniscient viewpoint and at times it was difficult to focus on some of the passages when my mind kept asking, “What on earth does this have to do with the story?” But betwixt and between those sections, it is a good story about human nature. I’m glad I read it again.

 
 

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