I got this copy because I wanted a copy of the Hapgood translation in print that was unabridged, and in print. Being unable to find a hardcover with those criteria, I settled for this one.
What a pleasant surprise.
What I actually thought was a paperback was really a "flexiback." I am starting to see more large books being printed in this medium, and it is really neat. It is the best of both worlds really. This cover actually feels like faux leather - surely not cardboard - and it has a matte feel to it that gives a nice amount of grip for holding this big book. The words on the front and the back are actually embossed into the covers, which makes it look quite nice. The pages are of a perfect thickness for the size of this book. They are not too thin, but they are not thick. And also, and most importantly, the book is quite thick - it is genuinely unabridged.
This is one of my favorite books on my shelf. I am really glad I bought it, and at ~$10, it's...
Who is responsible for this gorgeous design?? I can't tell you how gorgeous this book is in person. My father has a great love for all things Les Mis and when he saw my copy he fell in love. He begged me to give it to him but I love it to much! I just received a second copy that is his Christmas gift this year :) Les Mis is beautiful book anyways, this cover gives it the artwork it deserves. I read the entire book with this copy. I loved the placement, feel, and look of every page. 5 stars isn't enough! This is a truly stunning copy of this beautiful literary work.
As a point of reference, I typically read fiction at a pace of roughly 30 pages per hour (not a fast reader). This work consumed 80 hours, roughly a month of reading for me. The flowery writing style prevalent in so many 19th century writers is one factor, but there is also much to be considered in the themes presented by the author. I reread many passages to make certain that I fully understood the ideas that were being presented, before moving forward. In short, this is not an easy read. There are passages that are beautifully composed, and there are others where the reader must skim the text to advance. In the case of the later, these passages are few, but so exasperating (the listing of street names is one example). As I finished up, I recall coming away with the feeling that I was glad to have read this... the time spent was nothing.
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