Hunchback of Notre Dame is the main classic I have attempted to read over break and actually finish it. Believe it or not it took me only 11 days to read this classic book. Hunchback of Notre Dame is written by Victor Hugo, who also wrote Les Misérables, and it is his first masterpiece book.
Here’s the thing about Hunchback of Notre Dame, for the longest time I struggled with knowing what exactly the plot is. But as expected he spends a lot of time setting up characters, but he spent about the first fifth or so of the book talking about a minor character, but it helped introduce Esmeralda into the story. Setting up gave the background of Quasimodo, the hunchback in the story. Not only is he a hunchback, but he is also deaf and can only see out of one eye.
I feel as if this book is a love story. It appears as if three people love Esmeralda: Phoebus, Frollo, and Quasimodo, but Esmeralda loves Phoebus so we have a bit of a love square. It shows how love is beautiful, but also how it can be destructive. Two people in this story are coping with unrequited love: Frollo and Quasimodo and their responses to it are complete opposites.
About the plot, it is mainly about Esmeralda, Frollo and Quasimodo. Frollo raised Quaismodo. He does not respond to love he has for Esmeralda very well and it is an unrequited love and he responds in a Phantomesque way. He seems to get more evil and darker as the story continue. Because of how evil and dark he is, I do not like Frollo at all. He eventually comes up with some evil plans and at one point he said something like “no one else can have her”, so he tries to force Esmeralda to love him, but Esmeralda keeps on saying no because she loves Phoebus and is terrified of him. At one point when Frollo hears that Esmeralda and Phoebus love each other, Frollo responds by stabbing Phoebus hoping to kill him so you see he does respond in a phantomesque way.
I love Esmeralda and Quasimodo. Esmeralda has this pet goat and I love the pair of the two of them together and she is a gypsy and just like Quasimodo is treated unfairly. When she shows kindness to Quasimodo, he falls in love with her in a selfless way. He ends up protecting her whenever he can. I love how Quasimodo treats her and love how despite his disabilities, he is so sweet and wonderful. I love how Esmeralda is capable of showing compassion towards others and she is sweet too.
I actually enjoyed the tangents in this novel because they were short and did not take away from the actual story. They were fascinating to read about because they talked about the architecture of Notre Dame and gives an overview of Paris. I would rate this novel about a 7/10.
What do you think about Hunchback of Notre Dame and if you didn’t read it, would you want to read it?