I am curious to know, and for conversation sake, what is it that gives you this opinion? Why do you think he is the greatest? Can you think of another author living or dead with whom you can compare? I have never read any of his works, although I am familiar with some stories.
That is just the conversation I am looking for on these boards. Something with depth, something informative, but please, I hope your tone was not defensive, I am simply trying to stimulate the conversation. I think I will check out the link you provided more closely. He sounds interesting. I am presently enjoying Oscar Wilde and find him passionate and brilliant.
Thanks, maybe I'll give it a go, if I can find it in my local library. Then maybe we can converse some more.
I must say that Hugo is very high on my list of favorite writers. Les Mesirables is my favorite, though I've only read it once and am dying to read it again but I must put that off untill after I graduate.
Did you know that he thought himself to be such a great writer that he felt that France should have renamed Paris after him?
Despite his ego, I think he was a fantastic writer!
Hwæt! We Gar-Dena in geardagum,/Þeodcuninga þrum gefrunon,/hu ða æþelingas ellen fremedon!
Oft Scyld Scefing sceaþena þreatum,/ monegum mægþum, meodosetla ofteah,/ egsode eorlas, syððan ærest wearð/ feasceaft funden; he þæs frofre gebad,/ weox under wolcnum, weorðmyndum þah,/ oðþæt him æghwylc þara ymbsittendra/ofer hronrade hyran scolde,/gomban gyldan. Þæt wæs god cyning!
give me arthur rimbaud over hugo any day.
has a favorite author, but because he is your favorite doesn't mean he is the best. And being the best, if the best were possible to pick, is so subjective. Hugo has three books which every lover of literature should read. th first I would read would be Notre Dame de Paris which is a fairly good read and doesn't require a vast historical background. The second, is Les Miserables but I would skip the Battle od Waterloo which is often prinrted as a separate volume. This aside is difficult to read, and is not germain to the main story. The third is Toilers of the Sea. with these three read, you probably will have enough Hugo to last for quite a while. I have read others also, but many require a good background in French history and are not for the casual reader. I read Ninety-Three but spent a lot of my time in brushing up on the revolution within the French Revolution, and I had read Carlyle's The French Revolution before hand.
Victor Hugo was a great writer, but the best ever? He might not even be the best French writer of all time. Alexandre Dumas, known for The Count of Monte Cristo, The Three Musketeers (d'Artagnan Romances), is arguably the best writer of fiction France has ever produced. In terms of pure talent, Honore de Balzac, in my opinion, is up there as well.
I find it amusing that people are critiquing six year old posts...
Though of course favorites are subjective...
Hugo does not have inconsistencies. He revised and revised and revised after which he revised again. I think that Hugo had a much bigger vocab and more imginative style than Dumas, but on the other hand, Dumas wrote for the big public while Hugo wrote for 'the cause' and hoped someone would actually pick it up.
As to the others, I can't comment yet.
One has to laugh before being happy, because otherwise one risks to die before having laughed.
"Je crains [...] que l'âme ne se vide à ces passe-temps vains, et que le fin du fin ne soit la fin des fins." (Edmond Rostand, Cyrano de Bergerac, Acte III, Scène VII)