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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is Jane Eyre, sir
It's hard to imagine a better gothic romance than "Jane Eyre" -- gloomy vast houses, mysterious secrets, and a brooding haunted man with a dark past.

In fact, Charlotte Bronte's classic novel has pretty much everything going for it -- beautiful settings, a passionate romance tempered by iron-clad morals, and a heroine whose poverty and lack of beauty only let...
Published on Jan. 11 2009 by E. A Solinas

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3.0 out of 5 stars Immature and uneven.
One friend who prefers Charlotte Bronte to Jane Austen told me she would feel claustrophobic in the latter's world. And it does seem to be the common view that Jane Eyre is more liberated and complex than Austen's leading female characters. However, that is not my view. First, though, I must give the author credit for creating a childhood so realistic, so painfully...
Published on July 23 2003 by Fan of Fred Williamson


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is Jane Eyre, sir, Jan. 11 2009
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME)   
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
It's hard to imagine a better gothic romance than "Jane Eyre" -- gloomy vast houses, mysterious secrets, and a brooding haunted man with a dark past.

In fact, Charlotte Bronte's classic novel has pretty much everything going for it -- beautiful settings, a passionate romance tempered by iron-clad morals, and a heroine whose poverty and lack of beauty only let her brains and courage shine brighter. And it's all wrapped in the misty, haunting atmosphere of a true gothic story -- madwoman in the attic and all.

Jane Eyre was an orphan, abused and neglected first by relatives, then by a boarding school run by a tyrannical, hypocritical minister. But Jane refuses to let anyone shove her down -- even when her saintly best friend dies from the wretched conditions.

But many years later, Jane moves on by applying to Thornfield Hall for a governess position, and gets the job. She soon becomes the teacher and friend to the sprightly French girl Adele, but is struck by the dark, almost haunted feeling of her new home.

Then she runs into a rather surly horseman -- who turns out to be her employer, Mr. Rochester, a cynical, embittered man who spends little time at Thornfield. They are slowly drawn together into a powerful love, despite their different social stations -- and Rochester's apparent attentions to a shallow, snotty aristocrat who wants his wealth and status.

But strange things are happening at Thornfield -- stabbings, fires, and mysterious laughter. Jane and Rochester finally confess their feelings to each other, but their wedding is interrupted when Rochester's dark past comes to light. Jane flees into the arms of long-lost family members, and is offered a new life -- but her love for Rochester is not so easily forgotten...

"Jane Eyre" is one of those books that transcends the labels of genre. Charlotte Bronte spun a haunting gothic romance around her semi-autobiographical heroine and Byronic anti-hero, filling it with brilliant writing and solid plot. It has everything all the other gothic romances of the time had... but Bronte gave it depth and intensity without resorting to melodrama.

Bronte wrote in the usual stately prose of the time, but it has a sensual, lush quality, even in the dank early chapters at Lowood. At Thornfield, the book acquires an overhanging atmosphere of foreboding, until the clouds clear near the end. And she wove some tough questions into Jane's perspective -- that of a woman's independence and strength in a man's world, of extreme religion, and of the clash between morals and passion.

And Bronte also avoided any tinges of drippy sentimentality (Mrs. Reed dies still spewing venom) while injecting some hauntingly nightmarish moments ("She sucked the blood: she said she'd drain my heart"). She even manages to include some funny stuff, such as Rochester disguising himself as an old gypsy woman.

The story does slow down after the abortive wedding, when Jane flees Thornfield and briefly considers marrying a repressed clergyman who wants to go die preaching in India. It's rather boring to hear the self-consciously saintly St. John prattling about himself, instead of Rochester's barbed wit. But when Jane departs again, the plot speeds up into a nice, mellow little finale.

Bronte did a brilliant job of bringing her heroine to life -- as a defiant little girl who is condemned for being "passionate," as an independent young lady, and as a woman torn between love and principle. Jane's strong personality and wits overwhelm the basic fact that she's not unusually pretty. And Rochester is a brilliantly sexy Byronic anti-hero with a prickly, mercurial wit.

Of Charlotte Bronte's few novels, "Jane Eyre" is undoubtedly the most brilliant -- passionate, dark and hauntingly eerie. Definitely a must-read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Search for Human Compasion, June 4 2004
By 
Heather Feather (South Pasadena, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
The story of Jane Eyre is a classic tale of a search for human compassion. From the tragedies of her orphaned beginnings and a childhood with a hateful aunt who, out of spite, sends Jane to a prison-like life at Lowood Boarding School, Jane's strength of character shines through. Through each ordeal the reader develops a true concern for this "plain Jane". When she finally begins to find a more content life at Thornfield and as her relationship with Rochester develops into love the reader feels happiness for her, but follows her through the depths of despair at the shocking revelation that prevents her from marrying him. The reader cheers for her as she rebuilds her life as a strong, independent woman who is able to choose her destiny.
Jane Eyre is a beautifully written book, although at times Charlotte Bronte's descriptions were very wordy and therefore the reading process was difficult. Understandably, this descriptive style of writing was typical of an era in which the average person did not have the opportunities we now have to envision different people and places.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Jane Eyre: Charlotte Bronte's Most Captivating Work, June 2 2004
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Mass Market Paperback)
Quite arguably one of the greatest British novels ever penned, Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre" is so all-around-wonderful, it's no wonder that it's been adapted into 5+ movies.
We first meet Bronte's Jane as a child, young and abused, in the care of her aunt. We immediately take Jane under our wing, feeling more her personal protector with each turn of the page. Then, one day, Jane is a woman. Though retaining many of her childlike tendencies, Jane is determined to be independent: leaving her old boarding school victorious and free, she begins a governess position at the manor home of the elusive and mysterious Mr. Edward Rochester. It is Jane who tames Rochester's brooding and arrogant heart, reducing him to schoolboyish desperation.
So deliciously provactive is "Jane Eyre," that it is impossible not to devour it within days; my own worn-with-love copy sits next to a dog-eared "Villette."
It is sometimes speculated that Charlotte Bronte exercised her complicated mind through the written word; "Jane Eyre" is beautiful evidence of that.
As the story slows to its conclusion, you will find yourself lost: hungry for more of Jane, more of Rochester, and more of the magic that is "Eyre." Quench that thirst with more Bronte (perhaps Emily's "Wuthering Heights" or some of Anne's poetry?) or, if you're like me, a second read of the irresistible "Jane."
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5.0 out of 5 stars Romantic classic!, May 18 2004
By 
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
Charlotte Bronte takes a plain Jane, and makes her one of the most memorable characters from the likes of Bronte sisters. This novel starts at a boarding school, as we learn of Jane's painful childhood, grows into an exciting love story as governness Jane falls for Mr Rochester, (whose daughter she tutors), and after a lot of twists, drama, separation and engrossing trains of events Jane finds home, love and happiness.
I have had read the abridged version at age of 11, and loved it then. Over the years, I have repeatedly reread the novel. Like all classics, everytime I read it, it offers an array of previously unfelt emotions and of course remains as enchanting as ever. To say very least, it is like your favorite soap opera that you watched while growing up, has characters and events you nearly can never forget, and due to its ageless charm, you revisit those times and emotions through all the reruns and remakes. Maybe the weight of my years of association makes this novel unforgettable for me, but trust me, read it and you will definitely feel the romance, the pain, the emotion, the passion: and maybe like me, return to read it again!
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4.0 out of 5 stars a great classic, May 12 2004
By 
"smile369" (Seattle, WA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte, is a touching love story from the 19th century. Within the first few pages you will be swept up into a poor orphaned girl's troublesome life. Jane Eyre's sorrows, triumphs, and love are woven together in an almost magical way that keeps you reading until the end. There is mystery, suspense, and drama in this book, and also humor and happiness.
Jane is an orphan who was raised by her cruel Aunt Reed. She was sent off to a charity bording school called Lowood. There our 'poor and plain' heroine spends eight years. With sad and happy memories from Lowood, Jane departs to become a governess at Thornfield Hall. Little does she know of the mystery in the attic or the love that awaits her.
I reccomend this book to anyone who enjoys reading a good classic. It's really a magical tale that is worth reading over and over again.The reading is moderately hard, it is probably about high school reading level. I loved it, and
understood it, even though I am in 8th grade.

I think that when I finished this book I was slightly changed from what I was when I started this book. I can really relate to Jane Eyre, and that is why I think that girls tend to like this novel more than boys. Also because it is a romance,but who knows, it really depends on what kind of person you are.
Jane Eyre is a passionate novel that sketches the way women felt in the 19th century, and what they went through. Jane Eyre's passion pours out of her so strongly, especially in this sentence:
"...my soul began to expand, to exault, with the strangest sense of freedom, of triumph, I ever felt. It seemed as if an invisible bond had burst, and that I had struggled out into an unhoped-for-liberty"
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4.0 out of 5 stars a great classic, May 12 2004
By 
reviwer3 (Maine, NB USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte, is a touching love story from the 19th century. Within the first few pages you will be swept up into a poor orphaned girl's troublesome life. Jane Eyre's sorrows, triumphs, and love are woven together in an almost magical way that keeps you reading until the end. There is mystery, suspense, and drama in this book, and also humor and happiness.
Jane is an orphan who was raised by her cruel Aunt Reed. She was sent off to a charity bording school called Lowood. There our 'poor and plain' heroine spends eight years. With sad and happy memories from Lowood, Jane departs to become a governess at Thornfield Hall. Little does she know of the mystery in the attic or the love that awaits her.
I reccomend this book to anyone who enjoys reading a good classic. It's really a magical tale that is worth reading over and over again.The reading is moderately hard, it is probably about high school reading level. I loved it, and
understood it, even though I am in 8th grade.
I think that when I finished this book I was slightly changed from what I was when I started this book. I can really relate to Jane Eyre, and that is why I think that girls tend to like this novel more than boys. Also because it is a romance, but who knows, it really depends on what kind of person you are.
Jane Eyre is a passionate novel that sketches the way women felt in the 19th century, and what they went through. Jane Eyre's passion pours out of her so strongly, especially in this sentence:
"...my soul began to expand, to exault, with the strangest sense of freedom, of triumph, I ever felt. It seemed as if an invisible bond had burst, and that I had struggled out into an unhoped-for-liberty"
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5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Gorgeous, March 22 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
I don't especially know why I picked "Jane Eyre" off my shelves recently. It had been sitting there since I read it when I was younger and whilst perusing said shelves for something to amuse myself with, I came across it. I thank the Lord that I did because it's been the best read I've had since "Girl With a Pearl Earring". The plot: compelling and captivating. The narrative: descriptive, philosophical, flawless. The charaters: both believable and lovable. I was so engrossed I found myself getting angry when plans went awry and on the verge of tears when they went right. I recommend that you DO NOT read this while you are young, as a previous reviwer suggested... I did so the first time around and in no way shape or form was able to appreciate its subtleties and sheer elegance to a thousandth of the degree I do now. It IS romance; but even if that's "not your bag", you'll enjoy the pure power of Ms. Bronte's work. READ THIS BOOK: you won't regret it. Definately in my top 5 of all time.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Read it while you are young!, March 2 2004
By 
V. Nguyen (New York) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
Some say that I'm bias in this, but I have to say that I am not one to read romance novel. I'm just not. But I gave this book a shot.
A basic plot summary will give you a plain, unattractive young girl living under an oppressive aunt who sends her to a strict Christian school for the orphans. After years of suffrage at the school, Jane becomes a governess for the brooding Mr. Rochester, which she soon finds she has feelings for. But what about that Grace Poole, what is she hiding in the upstairs attack?
What seems like a mystery is over run by a prevailing romance between Jane and Mr. Rochester.
I won't divulge anymore of the plot. But I will tell you why I initially liked it.
Jane Eyre is the best example of the heroine I am most like. She is plain and simple and so am I. I connected well with the character. Quite often, I feel the heroes are too fake.
At its best, this is a story about two conflicting societies, the aristocracy and the middle class. Which is done in a rather blunt and humorous way.
But what I find enjoyable is the fact that if you take certain dialogs from the book completely out of context, it is quite funny. My friends and I have many a good joke because of it.
What I don't like isn't much, but it is where many books fail. The ending collapses the entire book. It felt pushed and corny. I thought it was the most predictable ending.
The entire story felt a bit contrive. But not as bad as Wuthering Heights by her sister, which I didn't even finish.
The book is pretty easy read. But read it while you are young like me (I'm in my mid-teens), or else, if you become an avid book reader, you will find nothing but faults.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Jane Eyre, Feb. 24 2004
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Mass Market Paperback)
Do you really need a review of Jane Eyre from me? You do not. There are five hundred and fifty eight reviews of Jane Eyre here ahead of me, and in fact, didn't I already write one and forgot about it? I may have. I don't have the desire to sort through all the Jane Eyre reviews and see. But, the point is, the book has been thoroughly worked over by critics, scholars, Victorian-era enthusiasts, college-girl nymphomaniac readers, feminists, Bronte fanatics, and possibly even extraterrestrials who slipped some info-disc we shot into space 20 years ago into a Martian disc-player and sampled the complete text. I'm not sure, mind you, whether Isaac Asimov, or Oprah Winfrey, ever got around to jabbering about Jane Eyre, though they both seemed (Asimov), or seem (Winfrey), to know everything--but Asimov apparently did write about everything in his lifetime, and Oprah surely has an opinion...
Me? I loved the language...some of the most captivating, superb passages ever ensconced in a dusty old fiction they say we should read. The plot? Oh, I liked Daniel Deronda better...but then Daniel does more for me than this Rochester fellow, who's fairly transparent and yakkety, compared to DD. On the other hand, Jane herself has it all over what's-her-name from the George Eliot novel--she's morally grounded, fierce in love, a survivor, and not a shilly-shally-er when it comes to decisions--and has a name that doesn't flit from the mind a few months later (it's always easier to recall a character's name, of course, when it's the title of the book, except for that Jude fellow, who's last name remains Obscure).
The plot, meanwhile? Well, it's simple, and it follows Jane around wherever she goes, whether she's reduced to begging at doorsteps (leave it to Jane to uncover the hypocrisy of a series of Welcome Mats), or whether she appears to have finally got what she wanted from life (she even gets what she doesn't want: Money; such talent this woman has!). Or, does she? That would be telling. She's also good at hearing strange voices...whether they be creepy, maniacal voices from strange rooms in large mansions, or disembodied voices crying across the landscape ("Jane, HELP!"; she is a talent, this Jane!).
So what have I accomplished? I fear a backlash, but all I have tried to do is write the most irreverent Jane Eyre review around (though an Asimov critique may already have me beat), designed not to blend into the morass. It's a great book, okay? I can't give it five whole stars because I gave Daniel Deronda five stars, and Jane Eyre isn't as good as Daniel Deronda, so it follows that Jane Eyre gets four stars. What do you want from me, blood? And no, I am not reading The Eyre Affair next. I don't work that way. Well, okay, I am likely to read the novelization of the Brain Of Morbius before reading Warmonger, but that's Dr Who stuff.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic! Loved it!, Feb. 8 2004
By 
Jennifer B. Barton "Beth Barton" (McKinney, Tx) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Jane Eyre (Paperback)
This turned out to be an exceptional book though I didn't think so in the beginning. By what seems the hundredth page, I had decided it was a feminine version of David Copperfield but not as interesting. By the hundred and fiftieth page, I was completely discouraged and was sure it had turned into the very romantic mush I detest (a lot of what she feels about him and what he feels about her, and so on). Somewhere soon after that, I fell in and was absorbed. It became a tremendously good book with a fantastic plot and a good pace. I read for hours and hours at a sitting enjoying every single minute of it and only stopped when something absolutely forced me. Excellent, excellent!
Jane Eyre is an orphaned child under the guardianship of her maternal aunt. Not liked by her aunt and not able to get along with her cousins, Jane is sent to Lowood School for the children of the poor (it is a charity school) to be taught the fundamentals and, more importantly, to be conditioned for a life of poor expectations. Lowood changes the strong willed, impetuous Jane into a woman of uncommon restraint. When she accepts a post as governess to Adele at Thornfield Hall, she attracts the attention of Mr. Rochester, the master of the house, who has the desire to reclaim himself from a sordid past. He comes to believe that Jane has the power to transform him and help him to realize himself in the better light that he has not heretofore been able to achieve on his own. But his secrets are not far away and peculiar events at Thornfield make the reader question his advances. Sworn not to ask about who or what is in the room on the third floor, Jane's iron resolve begins to falter with the dreamlike romance and the reader begins to trepiditiously hope for her happiness. When Mr. Rochester is unable to keep his past under wraps, however, Jane is forced onto a path that will require all of her internal resources to survive but will ultimately put her in the position to make choices for herself rather than just choose among available options. The question is, with her conditioning, can she lead with her heart instead of her head?
My only legitimate greivance, and given only in the vein of humour, is that is seems like Jane would have taught Adele some English. The child speaks only in French and myself not being able to read French, I did not understand anything the child ever said. Luckily, her exuberance and intent still comes through and the reader can develop a softness for the child without understanding her dialogue.
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Jane Eyre
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (Paperback - Feb. 4 2003)
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