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Jane Eyre (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 29 Jun 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; Reprint edition (29 Jun. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141441143
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141441146
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.6 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 13,391 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"At the end we are steeped through and through with the genius, the vehemence, the indignation of Charlotte Bronte."--Virginia Woolf

About the Author

Charlotte Bronte (1816-55), sister of Anne Bronte and Emily Bronte. Jane Eyre appeared in 1847 and was followed by Shirley (1848) and Vilette (1853). In 1854 Charlotte Bronte married her father's curate, Arthur Bell Nicholls. She died during her pregnancy on March 31, 1855 in Haworth, Yorkshire. The Professor was posthumously published in 1857.

Dr Stevie Davis is a novelist, critic and historian. She is Director of Creative writing at the University of Wales Swansea. She is the author of four books on Emily Bronte, three novels, and three books in the Penguin Critical Studies series.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By "avluela_tomoe" on 24 Sept. 2004
Format: Paperback
I should probably start by pointing out that I used to hate reading classics. Old novels? Feh. The flowery language alone was enough to bore me to tears.
But Jane Eyre was different. Jane Eyre was a the kind of a book a girl could grow up with. When I was a child Jane's fierceness and her stubborn desire to stand up to those who belittled her inspired me. As I grew older, I began to appreciate the other messages woven into the text. Every time I read it, something new opened up to me. Books that grow better with every read are rare and precious. Jane Eyre is one such book.
Basically, the book is an account of the life of the fictional character Jane Eyre. From childhood onwards, the girl suffers from bad treatment and hardship because she is not pretty enough, not witty enough, not cheerful enough to make herself loveable. But through it all, Jane is portrayed as a girl with great resilience and courage, with a belief in her own self worth that woill not let her give up.
What makes this book so great is perhaps the unique and vivid voice with which the whole story was told. Jane's first person view of all that occurs is well portrayed, and her soul really shines through. Charlotte's Bronte's use of language is superb.
I will try not to give any more of the book away, because frankly, the only way to enjoy it is to read it yourself. Jane Eyre is a wonderful piece of fiction. Both powerful and alive in a way that many books, both classic and modern, are not.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. K. A. Wheatley TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 22 Nov. 2007
Format: Paperback
This is a great book, bristling with anarchy, anger and rebellion. It is so unusual for a Victorian novel that even now, reading it all this time on, it still has the power to shock. Jane spends the entire book upsetting decorum, railing against her fate and succumbing to her desires. It's absolutely fascinating to see so many Victorian taboos being broken.
Someone mentioned that the book is long. The Victorian convention was for the triple decker novel, which is basically three modern sized novels in one. This is why there are almost no short Victorian novels, so if you're looking for snappy reads, try a different era.
I for one, think that this book is just about perfect. It is tautly written, suspenseful despite the length, and pacy. It is full of cliff hangers and drama, and you always want to know what happens next. The ghostly, supernatural element is done brilliantly, both with the episode at the beginning with Jane in the Red Room, and the episodes with Bertha Mason once Jane arrives at Thornfield Hall.
The basic plot is that Jane, an orphan child, is dumped on unwilling and unloving relatives who make her life a misery. She in turn makes their lives a misery, and is peremptorily packed off to boarding school where amidst great trials and tragedy she becomes a governess. Her first job takes her to Thornfield Hall where she meets the wonderfully brooding anti-hero, Rochester. They fall in love, and things go horribly wrong from thereon in.
I must have read this book at least half a dozen times, and it never ceases to be a pleasure. There is always something new to find. For students, I recommend reading it alongside Gilbert and Gubar's seminal critical work, The Mad Woman in the Attic. It is a revelation. I also recommend reading it alongside Jean Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea, which was published in the 1950's and deals with the back story for Bertha Mason. It adds such depth to the work I guarantee you will need to read it again afterwards.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Forever Procrastinating on 7 Nov. 2008
Format: Paperback
To put it quite simply: this novel is wonderful. The passion at its core, whether that be Jane's struggle against her Aunt or her turbulent love affair with Mr Rochester, is always thrilling and bears repeated reading well. While you may not always agree with Jane's actions/thoughts/reasoning from a modern point of view the novel exercises a sufficient pull on your powers of empathy to render this a very minor niggle. The novel is full of wonderful imagery and symbolism to make this a wonderfully rich text. This version contains some helpful notes on the text, an appendix of reviews that greeted the work on it's original publication and some 'mini-essays' by Stevie Davies which includes an interesting section on the politics of the novel.
All in all, a must buy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jess on 29 July 2012
Format: Paperback
Jane Eyre was the first period novel I've ever read. It was certainly a challenge after spending all my life reading modern-day writing such as Harry Potter... but it was so worth powering through. Bronte took me into a different world, full of mystery and darkness but never letting go of the sense of reality in the 19th century. The detail of Jane's life is incredible, and we live through her as her relationship with Mr. Rochester develops. Although a slow-paced book, it is not less enjoyable. The depth of detail and build-up create a sense of time and realism rather than impatience.

I have never word reads quite so powerful as when Jane and Edward were in the garden, and he finally tells her that he is not going to marry Blanche Ingram. The TV adaption by BBC (4 episodes) portrays Bronte's novel excellently. It is a classic that introduced me to the world of period novels, such as Wuthering Heights and Pride and Prejudice. it makes modern novels appear lacking!

This is an essential classic for every literature fanatic.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Boof VINE VOICE on 2 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Wow! Just wow!

I am a latecomer to Jane Eyre and I am now wondering what the hell took me so long. This book is amazing from start to finish and I found myself thinking about it whenever I couldn't get to it to carry on reading.

Jane Eyre is a fantastic character and I had more than a few laugh-out-loud moments with her. My favourite being when the school governer tell her she is naughty and asks how she can stop being burned in the pits of hell to which she replies "I must keep in good health, and not die." Genius!

The story of Jane Eyre spans over a decade and we follow her from her first home as an orphan in her rich relatives home where they treat her as an outcast, through boarding school for orphan girls and on to work as a governess where she meets Mr Rochester.

The whole books is beautifully written and engaging and I never once found a dull moment.

This is one book that I will be going back to again and again, I'm sure, and it has gone straight into my top 5 of all time
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