The Compulsive Reader: Jane by April Lindner

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Jane by April Lindner

When Jane Moore's parents die unexpectedly and her siblings shun her, Jane must learn how to become self-sufficient quickly. Unable to pay her tuition, she temporarily drops out of Sarah Lawrence and applies for a position as a nanny. But her new employer is not who she expects in the least—Nico Rathburn, legendary rock star, and father of Jane's five-year-old charge, Madeleine. Jane's never been especially impressed with the rich and the famous before, but there's something about Nico that is attractive. And despite his mood swings, murky past, and their age difference, Jane and Nico fall in love. But will Jane's fairy tale ending be derailed by the dark secret kept tucked away on the third floor of Nico's mansion?

Jane is April Lindner's dark, sexy, and romantic take on the timeless classic Jane Eyre. Lindner does an excellent job at bringing this tale into the twenty-first century while still staying true to Charlotte Bronte's original plot. Some names and the circumstances of Jane's past are changed to make the story more realistic in a modern context, but the thoughts, feelings, and personalities of the characters are still accurate—which can be hard to with a story like Jane Eyre, where class distinctions and the conventions of the nineteenth century play a very large role in how the plot unfolds. This retelling doesn't quite capture the mystery and air of supernatural drama of the original, but Lindner manages to develop Jane's relationship with Nico into something a bit more tangible and real than what exists between the original Jane and Mr. Rochester, creating some excellent romantic tension. The River siblings are fun and Jane's time spent with them is portrayed well, but it flies by quickly as Jane moves toward the decision to return to Nico—and encounters a few surprises. Jane is not an exact retelling, but it very well-written and engaging. Those who have read and enjoyed Jane Eyre will be entertained, and those who have not will most likely be very inspired to pick it up.

Cover Comments: Hm, I'm a bit conflicted on this one. On one hand, the girl on the front and the gray of the background suits the mood of the original quite well, and I like the pop of pink in the title. But...the clothes the girl is wearing don't fit the original Jane Eyre or Jane Moore, and the cover seems kind of random when you compare it to the story. It's nice, but it just doesn't fit.

Digital copy purchased.


Anonymous said...

LOVED Jane and love Jane Eyre. <3

Jamie said...

I'm gonna have to get this one out of the library system! Great review!:)

Christina T said...

I haven't read this yet but I have it on my bookshelf and plan to get to it sometime soon. Thanks for your review! I have a feeling I will love Jane. I agree with you about the cover but it is pretty. I think it might keep some teens from picking it up though.

jayme said...

I'm reading this book right now. I love Jane Eyre :) I love the cover to this one.

Readingjunky said...

Thanks for the heads-up on this one. I loved JANE EYRE so I'm interested in getting a look at this book.


Anonymous said...

I agree with you about the Cover, it's pretty but it doesn't really fear Jane Moore or Jane Eyre.

I did love this book though, I read it a couple of months ago and it actually lingered in my mind for a while.

I was quite okay with the changes April Linder made to modernize the story, even if it kept it from being an exact re-telling.