•Jean Valjean—French peasant who goes to prison for nineteen years for stealing a loaf of bread and finds redemption
•Javert—police inspector who disdains all who overstep the bounds of law and who wants Valjean arrested for his crimes
•Fantine—young mother of Cosette who is mistreated by society and tragically dies
•Cosette—innocent daughter of Fantine who is raised and loved by Valjean and who marries Marius
•Marius—young son of Georges Pontmercy who falls in love with Cosette and joins the uprising of 1832
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo tells the story of the transformation of Jean Valjean from hardened criminal capable of impetuous evil into loving benefactor of a vulnerable child whose mother dies as a result of unjust actions. This historical novel, first published in 1862, is set in France from 1789 to 1833 and focuses on the June 5–6, 1832, uprising in Paris in the aftermath of the French Revolution.
Matt Rawle, The Grace of Les Miserables (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2019).