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Jenna Starborn A Novel Paperback – Apr 4 2002


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Ace (TRD) (April 4 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 044100900X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0441009008
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 15 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #544,952 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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You would think that if someone commissioned your conception, paid for your gestation, and claimed you immediately after your harvesting, she would love you with her whole heart; but you would be wrong. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5 stars
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By Sarah Sammis on June 11 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Jenna Starborn is heavily influenced by the sisters Brontë. As I have enjoyed their books, I loved the way this book stiched together the plot points of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights and yet created a fully realized futuristic world.
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By A Customer on Nov. 16 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I was intrigued when I first saw this book, but after reading it, I am only disappointed. The book was shallow and unengaging throughout. Shinn focuses on trite details, such as ensuring that all parallel characters have similar names, without bringing anything new or meaningful to the storyline. Oddly enough, she brings in "Janet Ayerson" as a foil for her heroine, Jenna Starborn. Janet Ayerson is kind, but weak and uninteresting. I can only interpret this as a criticism of the original Jane Eyre. What would cause Shinn to cast Charlotte Bronte's heroine in this light? Charlotte Bronte was a feminist before her time, and Bronte's heroine displays more strength and integrity than her hero. If you want to read Shinn, I would recommend "Heart of Gold" or "Summers at Castle Auburn." Or better yet, read the original "Jane Eyre."
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
this book is an absolute treat. If you love Jane Eyre -so do I- you will feel the fun in foreseeing the events in the plot but wondering how the author will adapt them to this sf setting. If you love science fiction you will feel interested in the multilayered society that the author decpicts, where the caste one person is born in is totally decissive of this person's fate. I don't feel that any literary work is untouchable or sacred, as long as the new versions respect the themes that the original author wanted to convey. This version unquestionably does. On the other hand, I think the original, beloved Jane Eyre is also a wonderful version of the ancient tale of Beauty and the Beast. This is, of course, not the only remake that we know of Jane Eyre; I suppose everybody remembers Rebecca so...what's all the fuss about? Jane Eyre is such a good story, it conveys its thems so well, that it is immortal and can be adapted to any period of time ...including the far future of a sf novel. And only an author who loved this story and knew it in depth could attempt to do what Sharon Shinn has done here. Thank you, Ms.Shinn, for proving to me in this nice way that Jane Eyre will never die and that its message will always be good!
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By Lucinda A. on Nov. 10 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
My comment is probably redundant, but the feeling behind it is strong: I couldn't believe it, when I finished the book. I asked myself what motivation would an author so well versed and interesting as Ms. Shinn possibly have for engaging in a risky competition with Bronte -- and then compromising like a novice, with not even a modicum of effort for coming up with an original plot element. I haven't figured out a decent answer yet. That this is a rewriting of "Jane Eyre" doesn't bother me; what does bother me very much is the fact that it is a ridiculous rewriting of "Jane Eyre". Peel away the dramatic tension; move forward in time, change planets; switch the secret wife with a crazy robot - there you have it.
If this is your first book by Ms. Shinn, it's not that bad. There are enough traces of the author's usual good story telling ability and engagement with the characters to make it a pleasant read - maybe less so if you liked "Jane Eyre". But if indeed this is your first encounter with the author, give this well-deserving author a chance and start with some of her other works.
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By A Customer on Oct. 19 2003
Format: Paperback
This book is the futuristic retelling of the story Jane Eyre, which is one of my all-time favorite books. I went into this book knowing that, and while I expected man similarities, I thought the author would have at least try to give the book a bit of distinction.
If I wanted to read Jane Eyre, I'd pick up Jane Eyre. What I expected was the Jane Eyre story with some added twists. I would have enjoyed it more had there been some plot twists, but there weren't. Too bad.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you have not read "Jane Eyre" in a while, you may enjoy this book as a reminder of that experience. I did. I loved "Jane Eyre" and my reading interests include science fiction, fantasy and romance, so I am likely an ideal reader for "Jenna Starborn." I was interested but never profoundly moved. I finished "Jenna Starborn" and would not rate it as a waste of time, but found it more engaging as an academic exercise than as a novel-reading experience.
Sharon Shinn must truly love "Jane Eyre" to have recreated it this way, but this version never quite comes to life. I think some of the most interesting elements have to do with the very stratified society she envisions. "Jane Eyre" was set in such a world, and there could indeed be a version again. I'd have liked to see a book or story that pursued that idea further, even at the expense of dropping the original premise of recreating the Jane Eyre plot in the future.
If you have never read "Jane Eyre," this book will likely frustrate you, as many elements are included in order to create the parallel rather than because this world and these characters demand them.
Fans of hard core science fiction fans should not look to "Jenna Starborn" for science-based speculation. The science is minimal and the book has little enthusiasm for it.
This was my first outing with this author, and I suspect she has done better. Flawed though this book was, I enjoyed myself enough that I will certainly try her again!
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