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Old 08-18-2008, 10:47 AM   #1
HarryT
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Post Hugo, Victor: Les Miserables (Illustrated). v1, 18 August 2008

Description from Wikipedia:

Les Misérables is an 1862 novel by French author Victor Hugo, and among the best-known novels of the 19th century. It follows the lives and interactions of several French characters over a twenty year period in the early 19th century that includes the Napoleonic wars and subsequent decades. Principally focusing on the struggles of the protagonist—ex-convict Jean Valjean—who seeks to redeem himself, the novel also examines the impact of Valjean's actions for the sake of social commentary. It examines the nature of good, evil, and the law, in a sweeping story that expounds upon the history of France, architecture of Paris, politics, moral philosophy, law, justice, religion, and the types and nature of romantic and familial love.

English translation by Isabel F. Hapgood.

Enjoy!
This work is in the Canadian public domain OR the copyright holder has given specific permission for distribution. It may still be under copyright in some countries. If you live outside Canada, check your country's copyright laws. If the book is under copyright in your country, do not download or redistribute this work.

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Old 08-23-2008, 12:35 AM   #2
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Les Miserables "super" illustrated version?

Boy, this stirs my long-deferred ambition to put together a super-illustrated ebook edition of Les Miserables (and indeed all of Hugo's major works). In addition to a couple different English sets of Hugo, I've got an elaborately illustrated edition in French that I picked up on a business trip in Paris over 20 years back. It's 18 fairly large volumes with literally hundreds of illustrations, including quite a few by Hugo himself (though not in Les Miserables.) Putting that many illustrations into Les Miserables would make for a huge .lrf book, and would probably require splitting it up into the original 5 volumes.

I started on an MS word version 8-10 years back and managed to finish the first volume, first book or so, but the work of cleaning up the artwork was formidable (this French edition is >100 years old and on pretty dark yellow paper.) I'll see if I can at least find that part of the artwork and post it.

Ah, just found the old folder (from 1999). I've got 46 illustrations for the first two books of the first volume. I'm sure I could do a better job on cleaning up the scans now (16bit greyscale scans, etc.), but this suggests what could be done (see attached ).

I'd love to have this on my PRS-505, but I suspect it would take me at least a month of full-court-press effort to create it!

Steve
This work is in the Canadian public domain OR the copyright holder has given specific permission for distribution. It may still be under copyright in some countries. If you live outside Canada, check your country's copyright laws. If the book is under copyright in your country, do not download or redistribute this work.

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Old 08-24-2008, 12:27 AM   #3
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Just a quick follow-up: I did a scoping exercise with Part 1, Book 1 (the introductory chapters about Bishop Bienvenu/M. Myriel.) About 4 hours of authoring time, mostly in scanning and photoshop, and the result is 8Mb of lrf! At this rate, Part 1 (with 8 books) will be 60+Mb, and the entire book will be ~300Mb. The raw jpgs (high-quality, and mostly at 580 wide) account for almost 7Mb of that, so I suppose I could go to lower quality and compress the lrf by 3-4x.

However, the authoring time scales to about 160 hours, or, as I thought, easily a month of full-time work. A labor of love for my retirement, I guess!

Steve
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Old 08-24-2008, 04:20 AM   #4
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Yes, LRF files with full-page illustrations get SERIOUSLY large. The biggest book I've created is, I think, an illustrated version of Dickens' "The Old Curiosity Shop" which has about 75 illustrations (mostly half-page) and is 11MB in size.

The MobiPocket format handles illustrations much more efficiently; the same book in Mobi format is 5MB.
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Old 05-10-2010, 05:29 AM   #5
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@HarryT, this is a great copy ... well done!!
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Old 08-29-2010, 10:58 AM   #6
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Currently formatting

As mentioned in another thread on Les Mis, I'm currently formatting it; in fact I'm now over 35% of the way through. The result will be a .docx file with illustrations, based on the PG html version but proofed against a paper version published by Collins. Both versions have mistakes so I've corrected them; this won't be a scholarly edition so I haven't marked the corrections, and where there are differences which aren't errors as such, I've made my own choices.

When I've finished I intend to put it onto my Kindle, and read it hopefully sooner rather than later.

If anyone is interested, I'll upload the result here...
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Old 08-29-2010, 11:11 AM   #7
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Please do!
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Old 08-29-2010, 12:01 PM   #8
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OK, will do.
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Old 08-29-2010, 12:14 PM   #9
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But in a thread of its own, of course, not in this thread . My version is not proof-read, and is certainly full of errors.
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Old 09-04-2010, 01:32 PM   #10
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OK. Tho' I should clarify, I'm not proofing the whole work, just the formatting - I'm scanning (by eye) the printed version and applying any formatting I find to the Gutenberg version, and correcting any obvious errors I find in either version.

Currently over 60% of the way through. I've converted it onto my Kindle and it looks pretty good.
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Old 09-18-2010, 02:43 PM   #11
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I've now finished. The result is a .doc file of over 13MB, which is well over the limit for posting such files to this board. Mobipocket reader strips the pictures (unless I'm missing an option), and for Calibre I tried converting it to .mobi, first saving it as a pdf from Word; the result wasn't something I'd care to be associated with.

Any suggestions?

Another question: although I fully intend to make my work available on this forum for free download, I've read the Gutenberg terms and it seems that it would be possible to sell it, if they gave permission. Since I believe it's the only formatted version of this translation in the world, it might be worth my while doing so. I've placed some checks in the text so that if someone else did so with my work, I'd be able to identify it. Is that contentious or reasonable?
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:06 AM   #12
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Unfortunately you'd struggle to claim any sort of "rights" on what you've done. Copyright protection generally requires creativity; proof-reading is not a creative process. Goodness knows it's a lot of work, but it's not creative work.

Word "doc" format is an unfortunate choice of format to have chosen; you'd have been much better with HTML. I don't really know any good way of exporting doc to something usable.
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:06 AM   #13
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Well, by that definition, Project Gutenberg can't claim copyright either - typing a novel into a computer is also not creative. I don't know that I'd actually bother to try to sell it, but I'd certainly be annoyed if someone else did.

I chose Word because I'm familiar with it and I've never had any problems converting between it and html; I've saved LM as html and it looks fine, as does the pdf version.

The only remaining issue is that the PG version has a list of illustrations which are html links, I haven't found out yet how to set it up in Word so I may have to do so in html. I may also post a prc version without illustrations - I don't find the illustrations add anything in this particular work.
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:48 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madwab View Post
Well, by that definition, Project Gutenberg can't claim copyright either - typing a novel into a computer is also not creative. I don't know that I'd actually bother to try to sell it, but I'd certainly be annoyed if someone else did.
PG don't claim copyright. They simply require that IF you refer to "Project Gutenberg" in your book, that you leave in all their licence material. You are free to remove it all, and then do whatever you wish with the book, including resell it, etc.

Quote:
I chose Word because I'm familiar with it and I've never had any problems converting between it and html; I've saved LM as html and it looks fine, as does the pdf version.

The only remaining issue is that the PG version has a list of illustrations which are html links, I haven't found out yet how to set it up in Word so I may have to do so in html. I may also post a prc version without illustrations - I don't find the illustrations add anything in this particular work.
I like illustrations myself, but that's just a personal preference. The problem with Word's HTML export is that it's stuffed full of extraneous material, and can be difficult to subsequently edit as HTML.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:06 AM   #15
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I read the licence and interpreted it differently, but I just had another look and I see what you mean. So basically, I or anyone can sell it - although if they leave in the Introduction and brief biography I incorporated from the Collins edition, they may be in breach of copyright. Fair enough!

I've uploaded a .prc version to the relevant board.

I understand that Word's html output is limited, but I'm happy with that.

In general I like good illustrations, but I've seen few ebooks that incorporate them well - tho' the Dickens works on this board are some of the best.
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