'To the English, I am "shocking"...What's more, French, which is disgusting; republican, which is abominable; exiled, which is repulsive; defeated, which is infamous. To top it all off, a poet...' Victor Hugo dominated literary life in France for over half a century, pouring forth novels, poems, plays, and other writings with unflagging zest and vitality. Here, for the first time in English, all aspects of his work are represented within a single volume. Famous scenes from the novels Notre-Dame, Les Mis--eacute--;rables, and The Toilers of the Sea are included, as well as excerpts from his intimate diaries, poems of love and loss, and scathing denunciations of the political establishment. All the chosen passages are self-contained and can be enjoyed without any previous knowledge of Hugo's work. Much of the material is appearing in English for the first time, and most of it has never before been annotated thoroughly in any language.