For Musical and Movie Lovers who have not read Victor Hugo's Novel
You will walk away with a deeper understanding of Les Misérables, and a deeper understanding of your own human nature, and the nature of all of us who struggle everyday between our higher and lower selves. Rag Todi (Amazon reviews)
Mr. Antinoff's compact yet penetrating book provides the reader with a welcome bridge between the musical and Hugo's 1200-page novel, both broadening and deepening the reader's understanding of this compelling story and shedding new light on the mysteries of the heart. Martin Rosenfeld (Amazon reviews)
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Steve Antinoff: Les Misérables. For Musical and Movie Lovers who have not read Victor Hugo's Novel
ISBN 978-3-906000-18-3. 90 pp.
This book is written for those inspired by the musical and movie versions of Les Misérables who have not yet tackled Victor Hugo’s 1200-page masterpiece.
The novel is pervaded by two central conflicts. The first is the conflict between love and justice. Love is championed by the bishop and, later, by Valjean. Justice is the supreme god of the fanatical Police Inspector Javert. The second is the conflict between love and egotism. Found within the heart of Jean Valjean himself, it is barely discernable in the Jean Valjean of the musical; but without it, the central character of Hugo's novel and its adaptations in the performing arts cannot be fully understood.
All human beings, in experiencing the world, unavoidably find themselves as the center of their world. Self-centeredness therefore is tenacious. Yet what is commonly termed the "me generation" fell in love with a musical about a selfless man. Why is that? Is it not because there is in each of us an intimation that the highest form of self is to be selfless?
Going to the heart of Victor Hugo's magnificent novel, Steve Antinoff's book reveals the depth and beauty of its conception and throws new light on its central characters that inspired the authors of musical and film versions as well as a growing, world-wide public.
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