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Jane Eyre (Penguin Classics) Hardcover – October 27, 2009

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Product Details

  • Series: Penguin Classics
  • Hardcover: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics Hardcover; Reprint edition (October 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141040386
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141040387
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.2 x 2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,971 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Charlotte Bronte lived from 1816 to 1855. In 1824 she was sent away to school with her four sisters and they were treated so badly that their father brought them home to Haworth in Yorkshire. The elder two sisters died within a few days and Charlotte and her sisters Emily and Anne were brought up in the isolated village. They were often lonely and loved to walk on the moors. They were all great readers and soon began to write small pieces of verse and stories.

Once Charlotte’s informal education was over she began to work as a governess and teacher in Yorkshire and Belgium so that she could add to the low family income and help to pay for her brother Branwell’s art education. Charlotte was a rather nervous young woman and didn’t like to be away from home for too long. The sisters began to write more seriously and published poetry in 1846 under male pen names – there was a lot of prejudice against women writers. The book was not a success and the sisters all moved on to write novels. Charlotte’s best-known book, Jane Eyre, appeared in 1847 and was soon seen as a work of genius. Charlotte really knew how to make characters and situations come alive.

Charlotte’s life was full of tragedy, never more so than when her brother Branwell and sisters Emily and Anne died within a few months in 1848/49. She married her father’s curate in 1854 but died in 1855, before her fortieth birthday.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 28 customer reviews
A lovely book in a lovely cover.
Cammi Peck
I loved the story, the characters, the blend of romance, mystery, and gothic elements--in short, I loved everything about it!
C. Nunez
Jane Eyre is probably one of my favorites in classic literature.
Shelley D. Brook

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 27, 2009
Format: Hardcover
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...
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Format: Hardcover
As much as I know this is a classic, and I feel a review a tad redundant, I've just read the magnificent Jane Eyre for the first time, and I'm so utterly enamoured, I simply must wax poetic about it a while!

Where to start. I've just finished reading Charlotte Brontë's Gothic masterpiece for the first time, and I feel a mixture of breathless and speechless.

Chronicling the life of the orphaned Jane Eyre, the novel begins with a truly upsetting account of what can only be called horrific child abuse. We encounter Jane as she strikes back at her childhood tormentor--her cousin John--for the first time, after quietly enduring teasing, beating, and the hatred of her only family (her dead uncle's wife, and her 3 cousins) for the whole of her short 10 years. As punishment, she is confined to the 'Red Room', the room in which her uncle died. As the sun sets, and she's left in darkness, the terrified child has a panic attack, and her aunt advantageously uses the event to have Jane sent away to Lowood School--a change of scene to save her nerves.

We watch Jane grow into a passionate young woman, develop self-respect, a distaste for injustice, and her own strong sense of right and wrong. After completing her education, and working two years at Lowood as a teacher, Jane hungers for a new situation in life, so advertises in the paper, and is invited to take up a post as governess for a child, at a wealthy, private residence. Here we experience part spooky mystery, part love story, and see the world of Thornfield Manor through fiery and fascinating Jane's eyes.

Jane Eyre is many things--a journey of self discovery, a love story, and a surprisingly progressive tale for its day.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Cammi Peck on January 3, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A lovely book in a lovely cover. It was a great present for a friend who recently found a love for classics.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J C E Hitchcock on January 1, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I celebrated my 100th review on this site by putting forward my nomination (Hardy’s “Tess of the D’Urbervilles”) for the title of The Great English Novel, so I thought I would celebrate my 200th by putting forward an alternative candidate. Although it also contains elements of other genres “Jane Eyre” is an example of the Bildungsroman, a German term which literally means “novel of education” but which could be better translated as “novel of character formation”. Such novels follow the psychological and moral growth of the protagonist from childhood or youth to adulthood, and are often (as here) told in the first person.

The novel was first published in 1847, although references in the text suggest that the action takes place a few decades before that date, around 1800/1810. (A point generally lost on adaptors for television or the cinema, who persist in showing the characters dressed in early Victorian rather than Regency style).

Although it is set in an easily recognisable Northern England, and contains elements of social criticism, it is not really a social-realist novel as we would understand the term. From a twenty-first century perspective the plot is not a completely satisfactory one, relying overmuch on coincidence and containing too many plot-holes. What, for example, are the odds against Rochester’s brother-in-law Richard Mason turning out to be an acquaintance of Jane's uncle in Madeira, or against the Rivers family, who shelter her after her flight from Thornfield Hall, turning out to be her long-lost cousins? As for the plot holes, they mostly concern the figure of the “mad wife in the attic”.
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