Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Hunchback of Notre Dame - Victor Hugo

Today I have come to share my reading experience with a French classic "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" By Voctor Hugo.

The story is set in Paris in the 14th century..It is the dark times where the religious and political evolutions are playing crucial roles in human lives...This is the story of a beautiful Gypsies girl called Esmeralda..When she was an infant she got kidnapped by Gypsies from her loving mother..Esmeralda earns her bread by dancing in the streets along with her goat..She is a heartthrob of Paris people.Her extreme beauty also fascinates Claude Frollo,an Archdeacon (a rank below Bishop) of Notre Dame church..He admires her beauty most ardently but struggles internally,to have her against his social cadre and principles.Quasimodo is the step son of Claude Frollo..He is the Hero yet a hunchbacked bell ringer of Notre Dame with so many physical disabilities including deafness..He elected as the 'King of Fools' in the "Fools festival" where all the criminals,thieves and ugly people choose a person among them as King...


Image courtesy booksshouldfree.com


Quasimodo tries to kidnap Esmeralda on Claude's orders but Captain Phoebus saves her.Esmeralda falls in love with Phoebus but this guy only loves her physical beauty..While Quasimodo is getting punished for kidnapping her,Esmeralda shows her kindheartedness and serves him water..Quasimodo finds her as the only person,treated him with such great humanity and he starts loving her...Claude Frollo turns crazy and jealous and almost attempt to kill Phoebus at the moment he found Esmeralda and Phoebus very close...But he survives with minor injuries..Esmeralda got punished by the Parisian mob but Quasimodo saves her and set her safe in a closed cabin of Notre Dame church...Finally Esmeralda was hanged to death by the Parisian mob and Quasimodo disappears from the day on..After two and half years,in the pit of Montfaucon,people found two skeletons,one which held the other singularly embraced.

The novel depicts the true love of Quasimodo for Esmeralda...The story reveals the fact that beauty lies in the heart but not in the skin or in the physical appearance...It potraits the selfish nature of Phoebus who never loves Esmeralda but wants to use her.The main antagonist,Claude Frollo's  multiple shaded character is much interesting in the novel..His love towards his brother Jehan is very unique..He proves to be good hearted when he adopts the ugly little Quasimodo..But pity, he got pushed from the top of the church by his beloved son only....His foolish attraction towards Esmeralda leads to his transformation from human to demon...There is another person Pierre Gringoir who is a poet and namesake husband of Esmeralda..His fearful nature causes difficulties to   Esmeralda from Claude Frollo.Esmeralda's real mother 'Sister Gudule''s search for her lost child ends by finding her and loosing her on the same day..

Breifly the book is a blend of human emotions and beliefs of ancient Paris cultural..The book focussed on the architecture of Paris churchs in 14th century and it gave a very nice illustration  about Parisian culture, the people and their blind beliefs..Some cultural facts are really scary to read as we are too far from that time..But its always nice to know about ancient times..:-) Totally enjoyed the read..:-)

38 comments:

Rajesh said...

Interesting.

K.Nandagopal said...

A good review. I read the book years ago. I intend to read it again. I remember, however, an example the brilliant antithesis of Victor Hugo in this novel where three women were moving in the street and describes them one as - the most curious, and therefore, least sensitive.

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Rajesh,
Certainly interesting read..Thank you..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Nandagopal,
Welcome to my blog..:-)Yeah,thats a wonderful depiction indeed.Really great,you remembered those details even now..:-)Thanks for dropping by..:-)

Me said...

Lovely book review - one of my all time favourite classics :)

panchalibolchi said...

Wonderful review. I read this book sometime back...
Thanks for sharing..

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Privy,
Thanks a lot Privy..I liked it too..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Panchalibolchi,
Thanks a lot Panchali Jee..Glad to hear from you..:-)

Neeraj Kumar said...

A great review!!! Thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

Amropali said...

The first time I had read it I was a kid and then last year, I got a chance to get back to the book to write a paper for a course.

It kept me rapt for days.

:)

p.s: Have you tried comparing your reading of the book to the Disney version of the same? might turn out to be an interesting endeavor.

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Neeraj,
I'm really happy you enjoyed reading the post..:-)Thanks for taking time and commeting..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Amropali,
Thanks a lot for stopping by and commenting..:-)No,I haven't seen the Disney version yet..But as you are recommending,will get it for sure..I hope my little kiddu will definitely enjoy...:-)

Jayadev Menon said...

Hi

Thank you for bringing some happy memories from childhood - those days the classics were food for our young minds. We read Hugo, Dickens, Shaw, Emerson and others.

Am glad to encounter a young person who reads the classics.

Your narration kept me engaged. I look forward to reading more of your work.

Just one suggestion before I go ... you can improve the readability and finish by doing a spell check and some minor adjustments to sentences.

Best wishes!

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Jayadev Menon Jee,
Thanks a lot for stopping by and giving your valueble feedback..:-)Its my pleasure that my posts revived your memories.I love classics a lot..:-)I feel very soothing and peaceful while reading them..:-)

Will definitely follow your suggestions.Pls keep visiting..Thanks once again..:-)

Bradz Blog said...

Victor Hugo stops above all in objective description of characters and the period in which it was written and also the fragrance of emotions........I loved the book and I love it again as I read your blog....thanks for sharing such insights

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Bradz Blog,
Thanks a lot for dropping by.:-)This is my first book of Hugo..Looking forward to pick few more works from him..:-)

Mak said...

Victor Hugo is one of the best. Lovely review Nagini gaaru. Chaala baaga raasina post. thank you.

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@Mak,
Thanks buddy..:-)Good telugu by the way..:-)

The Fool said...

Interesting review. I also loved this book.

sajeevkmenon said...

I am inspired by your review to read this book. Thanks for sharing:)

తృష్ణ said...

కమల్ సినిమా "గుణ" కి ఈ నవల కథే ఇన్స్పిరేషన్ అంటారు.

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ The Fool,
Thanks a lot for the visit and comment..Good to know you also liked the book..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Sanjeev Menon,
Thanks a lot for dropping by..I'm happy that you are inspired to read it..You'll surely enjoy the read...All the best..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ తృష్ణ గారు,
అవునా !!! నాకు తెలీదండీ.నేను ఆ మూవీ పూర్తిగా చూడలేదు...If so will see..:-)

shooting star said...

definitely an interesting read....

http://sushmita-smile.blogspot.in

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Sushmita,
Thanks a lot for dropping by..:-)

vasu said...

I had read this book when I was in school.Nostalgic to read your review !

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Vasu,
Thank you so much for dropping by..:-)

Ashwini said...

It's really a very good book. Thanks for this nice review :)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

Hi Aswini,
Thanks a lot for your visit and comment..:-)Glad to have met you here..:-)

logic said...

Good review..nicely written..first time here !!

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Logic,
Thanks a lot for taking time and commenting..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Logic,
Thanks a lot for taking time and commenting..:-)

Mohini said...

Emite nagini chala pedda lineyevundi nee fans di. I am feeling very happy by seeing ur blog. At least now u started to share ur talent. It is very nice ra.

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Dear Mohini (Pishachi,)
Hey Today is the happiest day for my blog..I'm surprised to see you here yaar..:-)Thanks a lot for your lovely and precious comment..:-)

shylu said...

I wanna read this book.Thanx for following:) V r near.I'm from pondicherry:)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

Hi Shylu,
Glad to know we are near by..:-)yeah its a lovely read ..don't miss..:-)

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