A Year of Les Mis

I recently learned that there are 365 chapter in Les Miserables. Which just happens to be my favourite book.

I recently started rereading it, but when I saw this, about 365 chapters, I decided that instead of just reading it straight through, I am going to read a chapter a day for the next year.

I feel like this will help me to focus on the chapters even better, and absorb more of the story.

And May 22, the day of Victor Hugo’s death, seems like a good day to start reading.

I’ve loved Les Mis since I first read it. I think I was somewhere between 12 and 14. I got the book from the library, and, let me tell you, it isn’t an easy one to finish in the time the library lets you keep a book.

But I did it, and a short time later, my folks got me a paperback copy as a gift.

That book has gone with me to every continent except Africa and Antarctica.

It missed Africa, because I wasn’t taking it everywhere with me at that point, and it hasn’t been to Antarctica, because I’ve not been.

It even had its own little adventure in Australia, when I missed it as I was packing my bag at a hostel, and had to track it down and have it mailed back to me.

Yes, I am well aware that this brick of a book is a little bit of a silly option for reading material on a trip. Why not just put Les Mis on my Kindle?

Well…funny thing…it actually is on my Kindle. I have my whole Victor Hugo collection, and Les Mis is one of them.

But I love my old book.

It’s nothing fancy. It says on the cover that it is the only complete and unabridged paperback edition, and it looks a little rough.

The funny thing, though? This edition is copywritten in 1987. The same year I was born. You might say we were meant to be.

The inside is full of tea wrappers, and boarding passes, and even some random money (very small bills only, I know there’s at least money from India and Romania in there currently). Various things I’ve used as bookmarks while reading at different times.

It’s my anchor in the moments when I feel alone and adrift.

I’ve read Les Mis clear through at least a couple of times. And at other times, I open the book and read random parts that apply to life at the time.

20170521_104147 This is the intro to Les Miserables, which makes it seem like it is just as appropriate now as it was when it was written.

Maybe it takes a little time to read, but I believe that the universal truths in it make it very worthwhile.


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