Author: Charlotte Bronte
Cover Copy: “Orphaned Jane Eyre grows up in the home of her heartless aunt, where she endures loneliness and cruelty, and at a charity school with a harsh regime. This troubled childhood strengthens Jane’s natural independence and spirit – which prove necessary when she takes a position as governess at Thornfield Hall. But when she finds love her sardonic employer, Rochester, the discovery of his terrible secret forces her to make a choice. Should she stay with him and live with the consequences, or follow her convictions, even if it means leaving the man she loves? A novel of intense power and intrigue, Jane Eyre (1847) dazzled and shocked readers with its passionate depiction of a woman’s search for equality and freedom.”
My thoughts: The reason I chose this novel to be my first review is simple, Jane Eyre is my all time favourite book. I have two copies of Jane Eyre, one with a beautifully decorated cover which sits with pride of place in my bookcase, the other is completely tattered simply because it has been lovingly reread time and time again. For me this novel is about so much more than just romance, it is a passionate coming of age story that depicts such a wonderfully strong and before her time character in Jane. The feminist in me could not help but fall in love with this intelligent and fiercely independent woman who manages to be both blunt and dignified at the same time. I found myself desperately hoping that everything would work out for Jane and yet devastation seemed to follow her around every corner. Jane’s romance with Mr Rochester provided some quick witted banter between the pair which brought a whole new dimension to their characters and ultimately their true love wins out. I am not usually one for love stories but the fact that Jane is so dedicated to her principles which ultimately leads to her being rewarded with the love of her life melted even my sceptical heart. There is no doubt that Jane Eyre is beautifully written, it is such an eloquent piece of literature that in my opinion it is undoubtedly Charlotte Bronte’s greatest work.
“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me; I am a free human being with an independent will, which I now exert to leave you.”
“I do not think, sir, you have any right to command me, merely because you are older than I, or because you have seen more of the world than I have; your claim to superiority depends on the use you have made of your time and experience.”
“Gentle reader, may you never feel what I then felt! May your eyes never shed such stormy, scalding, heart-wrung tears as poured from mine. May you never appeal to Heaven in prayers so hopeless and so agonized as in that hour left my lips; for never may you, like me, dread to be the instrument of evil to what you wholly love”
“Reader, I married him.”
This is an exceptionally well written novel that details Jane’s journey from mistreated orphan to strong independent woman. She proves time and time again she is more than capable to deal with all life throws at her and ultimately her strong convictions are rewarded. Definitely worth reading time and time again.