This is a really great book. The timeless tale of Jean Valjean's journeys from a criminal to an honest and honorable man kept me glued to the pages until the beautiful, bitter-sweet ending. The other characters, besides being extremely well rounded and realistic (after all, the book is really very long), are all worthwhile people to read about, and we can learn from their mistakes. Javert, the merciless policeman, teaches that justice without mercy becomes cruelty. There are others, but I don't want to spoil the book!