Sunday, October 24, 2010

Jane by April Lindner


Forced to drop out of an esteemed East Coast college after the sudden death of her parents, Jane Moore takes a nanny job at Thornfield Park, the estate of Nico Rathburn, an iconic rock star on the brink of a huge comeback. Practical and independent, Jane reluctantly becomes entranced by her magnetic and brooding employer, and finds herself in the midst of a forbidden romance. But there's a mystery at Thornfield, and Jane's much-envied relationship with Nico is tested by a torturous secret from his past.

Part irresistible romance and part darkly engrossing mystery, this contemporary retelling of the beloved classic Jane Eyre promises to enchant a new generation of readers."
            Jane is a charming modern version of the classic novel Jane Eyre (which happens to be my favorite book). Unlike the inundation of rather unremarkable Pride & Prejudice updates, Jane is more than just readable. This is high praise indeed considering that Pride & Prejudice & Zombies is the only book I haven't finished reading in years. A beautiful old story takes on a fresh new life in Jane's pages.
            April Lindner transplants the story of Jane Eyre into a modern world with great care and attention to detail. While some events can be directly connected to its predecessor, Jane also takes on a life of its own. It does not follow the original novel in a blatant and clumsy way. Some similarities are so subtle that I did not even notice them at first. Ms. Lindner's ability to overcome the obstacles that occur when trying to bring the past and the present together may be the most remarkable part of this novel. She solves the problem of creating a class difference between Jane and Mr. Rathburn, deals with the issue of the mad woman in the attic, and even evokes some of the beauty and feeling of the original novel.
            Jane is such an enchanting read that I had it finished within twelve hours of purchasing it (yes I let it jump to the head of my TBR pile, but can you really blame me?). Jane (the character) is endearing, sweet, and interesting. She has a complicated past and a rich inner life. From the moment I met her in the lobby of the Discriminating Nannies Inc., I knew we were going to be good friends.
           Bottom line: read Jane. It doesn't matter if you love the classic or you've never heard of it, you will enjoy this novel.


1 comment:

  1. Great review! I read this book in one day as well, and I couldn't put it down. April Lindner is a bright new star in the YA universe and I can't wait for her next novel.