The Man Who Laughs
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Victor Hugo's scathing indictment of the injustice and inequality within Britain's political system tells a story of abduction, mutilation, loss and prejudice. The narrative follows Gwynplaine, the two-year-old heir to a rebel lord, who is abducted upon the orders of a vindictive monarch, who has him mutilated (to produce a permanent, grisly smile), then abandoned. After years of living frugally he is re-introduced to the aristocratic life, and resolves to become the voice of the voiceless, whether he is heard or not.