Victor Hugo

Les Misérables
  • Les Misérables

    • Victor Hugo

    • Christine Donougher (Translator)

    • Robert Tombs (Introducer)

    • Adeel Akhtar (Read by)

    • Natalie Simpson (Read by)

    • Adrian Scarborough (Read by)

    • Emma Fielding (Read by)

    • John Owen-Jones (Read by)

    Brought to you by Penguin.

    This Penguin Classic is performed by an ensemble cast which includes the BAFTA award-winning actor Adeel Akhtar (Killing Eve; The Night Manager; Les Miserables), Adrian Scarborough (Gavin and Stacey; The King's Speech), Natalie Simpson (Outlander; Les Miserables), Emma Fielding (Unforgotten; Les Miserables) and John Owen-Jones, who was the youngest actor ever to play the part of Jean Valjean in the stage show of Les Miserables, and who has appeared as Jean Valjean on Broadway and in the West End. This definitive recording includes an introduction by Robert Tombs.

    Victor Hugo's tale of injustice, heroism and love follows the fortunes of Jean Valjean, an escaped convict determined to put his criminal past behind him. But his attempts to become a respected member of the community are constantly put under threat: by his own conscience, and by the relentless investigations of the dogged policeman Javert. It is not simply for himself that Valjean must stay free, however, for he has sworn to protect the baby daughter of Fantine, driven to prostitution by poverty.

    (P) Penguin Audio 2020

Victor-Marie Hugo was born on 26 February 1802 at Besançon, where his father, an officer under Napoleon, was stationed. After his parents separated in 1812, Hugo lived in Paris with his mother and brothers. At twenty he married Adele Foucher and published his first poetry collection. Hugo was elected to the Academie Francaise in 1841. The accidental death two years later of his eldest daughter and her husband devastated him and marked the end of his first literary period. By then politics had become central to his life. Though he was a Royalist in his youth, his views became increasingly liberal after the July revolution of 1830. He initially supported Louis Napoleon, but turned against him after being denied a role in government following the coup d'état of 1851 and was forced into exile in Brussels and Jersey. After the fall of the Second Empire in 1870, Hugo returned to France and was re-elected to the National Assembly, and then to the Senate. Hugo is celebrated as a politician, a social campaigner, a poet and a novelist. His most famous works include Notre Dame de Paris (1831) and Les Misérables (1862). Victor Hugo died on 22 May 1885 and his state funeral was attended by thousands of mourners. Julie Rose lives in Sydney and is the highly regarded translator of more than a dozen works, including an acclaimed version of Racine's Phèdre as well as works by Paul Virilio, Jacques Rancière, Chantal Thomas, and many others.

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