I was talking to a friend about this book recently, and so I thought I’d do a quick review for those who have not read this classic tale of morals, romance and passion.
Jane Eyre, the protagonist and title character of Charlotte Bronte’s novel, starts the book as a young girl. She lives with rich relatives, and her cousin torments and bullies her constantly, making her childhood a nightmare.
And this is just the start of Jane’s unhappy life. While still young she attends a school in which an epidemic occurs, killing off a lot of the student population and giving Jane a first hand experience with death and grief from an early age.
This event, like a lot of the book, was mirrored in Charlotte Bronte’s personal life, with family bereavement from an early age.
Once a little older, Jane becomes a governess, working for the formidable Mr Rochester, for whom she develops an attachment.
The book takes various twists and turns, and follows as Jane becomes a young woman, battling against her inner demons, as well as trying to understand what her place is in Mr Rochester’s home, and how to deal with the mysterious Bertha.
This book is well-known because it was very unusual for nineteenth century women. While contemporary readers may not have known it was written by a woman, it closely follows the thoughts and feelings of a young woman, and all three Brontë sisters were known for portraying the trials and tribulations of growing up in a male-dominated society.
While I do like this book, I find the central character of Jane quite preachy, perhaps because of her intense moral code, sometimes a bit intense at times due to the period, or perhaps because I kept wanting to push her to do… something. Act on her passions and feelings every once in a while.
But having said that I really enjoyed this book when I read it, and writing this review has made me want to re-read it soon 🙂
Have you read ‘Jane Eyre’? Have you read any other works by the Brontes? Which ones would you like to try?
Let me know all your thoughts in the comments 🙂
Happy reading 🙂
Picture credits here