Marginalia: Victor Hugo’s House in Guernsey

Victor Hugo House in Guernsey: Maison de Hauteville

Victor Hugo famously said that the Channel Islands were “bits of France that fell into the sea and were gathered up by England.” He lived in Guernsey for 15 years while exiled from France. It is believed that he wrote Les Miserables (I recommend the Denny translation) there. Well, with that beautiful home and the stunning views, I’d be inspired to dash off my magnum opus too, I should think.

A couple of years ago, I’d read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows and added a slew of Guernsey-related to-dos to my wishlist. Some of these are:

1) The Book of Ebenezer Le Page by G B Edwards: The author’s only book, published posthumously. A lovely story of an entire past way of life on the island. My current reading. [Review here.]

2) Toilers of the Sea by Victor Hugo: One of his lesser-known works but stunningly beautiful. On my To-Be-Read list.

3) Enemy at the Door: Late-70s ITV 2-season TV series about the German occupation.

4) Island at War: Early-2000s Granada/ITV 1-season TV series about the German occupation. I watched this on Netflix and was frustrated with how it ended but, apparently, they will not do any more episodes as the writer is, sadly, dead.

5) And, of course, go on a few of the island tours. Sigh. Someday. Surely.

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