Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Jane Eyre - by Charlotte Brontë

I think I have read this three times, but only once as an adult.  Jane Eyre (UK edition) (Deutsch Edition) has a reputation as a woman's book, possibly because so many adolescent girls read and love this classic. 

Those men who do read the book are probably dutifully reading their way through the Brontë sisters. I hope not, but suspect it is the case!

This is a strange, dark, romantic book with a strange, dark romantic hero.  (A familiar Brontë theme.) The book has some interesting  plot twists and is not slow moving in that sense.  But time moves very slowly for Jane and Rochester.  I don't know if this is a book for everyone, but I think you will know from the first chapter if you are going to like it or not.  The beginning about Jane's childhood has always reminded me of Dicken's darker descriptions of childhood and is very affecting.
'You ought to be aware, Miss, that you are under obligations to Mrs. Reed: she keeps you: if she were to turn you off, you would have to go to the poorhouse."
I had nothing to say to these words: they were not new to me: my very first recollections of existence included hints of the same kind. This reproach of my dependence had become a vague sing-song in my ear: very painful and crushing, but only half intelligible. Miss Abbot joined in -

"And you ought not to think yourself on an equality with the Misses Reed and Master Reed, because Missis kindly allows you to be brought up with them. They will have a great deal of money, and you will have none: it is your place to be humble, and to try to make yourself agreeable to them."'
 It is a good book, give it a chance fellas!  And women, enjoy it again!

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