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June 20, 2022

3

#Classic Victor Hugo

by N@ncy

JUNE

Le Dernier Jour d'un Condamné by Victor Hugo by Victor Hugo Victor Hugo

Finish date: 19 June 2022
Genre: novella
Rating: A+++++

Good news:
I was surprised how easy this book was to read in French. If you want to polish up your basic French reading skills this is THE book to start. Topic was straight forward: plea to end the death penalty
…and the POV of a condemned man. He decides to keep a journal of is “monologue intéreur” ….with the rationale being “What have I got to lose?”

Good news:
Victor Hugo is one of the best writers. In this book the “tour de force’ were his descriptions of the prison cell, being bound in chains, visits by the prison chaplain who was on auto-pilot…doesn’t give a hoot about the convict’s soul, the guillotine, the blade and how the pulls and trolleys have to be well greased! Just chilling.

Bad news:
There were chapters near the end filled with memories and dreams/nightmares. The convict is quickly approaching “l’instant fatal” and appears to be confusing his visions/dreams with reality. Interesting but these pages did not have the shock effect that pervades in the rest of the book.

Personal:
Powerful…that is the only word I can use to describe this novella. Victor Hugo wants you to be there
…when the convict’s hands are tired, when his hair is shaved off, when he is transported in a “charrette” to the scaffold. You as reader must be there when his head is on the ground and his body is still at the chopping block.
#MustRead Classic

PS: Good reading tip the November challenge #NovNov or #ParisInJuly

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3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jul 20 2022

    I need to look this up and figure out what the title is in English!

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    Reply
    • Jul 20 2022

      Last Day of a Condemned Man….short novelle and very good!

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      Reply
  2. I’m glad to see how much you liked this one.

    Like

    Reply

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