Title: Jane Steele
Author: Lyndsay Faye
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons 2016
Genre: Fiction - Retellings
Rating: 4/5 stars
Reading Challenges: UnRead Shelf; Popsugar - Retelling of a Classic; Women Authors
A sensitive orphan, Jane Steele suffers first at the hands of her spiteful aunt and predatory cousin, then at a grim school where she fights for her very life until escaping to London, leaving the corpses of her tormentors behind her. After years of hiding from the law while penning macabre “last confessions” of the recently hanged, Jane thrills at discovering an advertisement. Her aunt has died and her childhood home has a new master: Mr. Charles Thornfield, who seeks a governess.
Burning to know whether she is in fact the rightful heir, Jane takes the position incognito and learns that Highgate House is full of marvelously strange new residents—the fascinating but caustic Mr. Thornfield, an army doctor returned from the Sikh Wars, and the gracious Sikh butler Mr. Sardar Singh, whose history with Mr. Thornfield appears far deeper and darker than they pretend. As Jane catches ominous glimpses of the pair’s violent history and falls in love with the gruffly tragic Mr. Thornfield, she faces a terrible dilemma: Can she possess him—body, soul, and secrets—without revealing her own murderous past?
I was super excited about the premise and was super excited to read this retelling of Jane Eyre. But the first volume really bored me. There was too many reference and similarities to the original Jane Eyre. It was constant. Too much… I thought it weird that this retelling was set in a universe where the original book exists. It took me awhile to deal with this fact. And the section about Jane’s childhood was not amazing. Thankfully volume two was so much more interesting! The story really picked and up and I sped through the rest of the story. Jane really started growing on me as a character and the additions of Sardar Singh and Mr. Thornfield completed the story.
Next up on the TBR pile: