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Old 09-03-2017, 08:27 AM   #1
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September 2017 Discussion: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (spoilers)

You've found the place to discuss the fascinating September 2017 MobileRead Book Club selection, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. What did you think? Discuss whenever you’re ready.
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Old 09-03-2017, 03:11 PM   #2
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Good lord, Rochester is long winded. Jane tells us that it was his nature to be communicative. Reader, that's an understatement. Jane barely gets a word in edgewise. He tells her, "I will spare you the trouble of much talking: I will answer for you..."

Jane doesn't help. When he says, "Can you listen to me?", she replies, "Yes, sir; for hours if you will." No, Jane! Think of your reader!

Hours later, he says, "But before I go on, tell me what you mean by your 'Well, sir?' It is a small phrase very frequent with you; and which many a time has drawn me on and on through interminable talk." No kidding.

I had never read Jane Eyre. I enjoyed the plot twists and turns which called for the suspension of disbelief.
Spoiler:
No one at Thornfield Hall, except for Grace Poole, knew there was a mad woman in the tower. Yea, right. Jane was coincidentally saved by her cousins. Sure.
It was fun, and I'm happy to have finally read it.

Last edited by BelleZora; 09-25-2017 at 10:00 PM. Reason: added spoiler alert
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Old 09-03-2017, 05:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by BelleZora View Post
Good lord, Rochester is long winded. Jane tells us that it was his nature to be communicative. Reader, that's an understatement. Jane barely gets a word in edgewise. He tells her, "I will spare you the trouble of much talking: I will answer for you..."

Jane doesn't help. When he says, "Can you listen to me?", she replies, "Yes, sir; for hours if you will." No, Jane! Think of your reader!

Hours later, he says, "But before I go on, tell me what you mean by your 'Well, sir?' It is a small phrase very frequent with you; and which many a time has drawn me on and on through interminable talk." No kidding.

I had never read Jane Eyre. I enjoyed the plot twists and turns which called for the suspension of belief.
Spoiler:
No one at Thornfield Hall, except for Grace Poole, knew there was a mad woman in the tower. Yea, right. She was coincidentally saved by her cousins. Sure.
It was fun, and I'm happy to have finally read it.
Spoiler:
Didn't the madwoman die?
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Old 09-03-2017, 06:05 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Luffy View Post
Spoiler:
Didn't the madwoman die?
Spoiler:
Yes, in the third volume. I meant that Jane was saved by her cousins.
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Old 09-03-2017, 06:30 PM   #5
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Thanks, that cleared things.
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Old 09-04-2017, 07:51 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BelleZora View Post
Spoiler:
No one at Thornfield Hall, except for Grace Poole, knew there was a mad woman in the tower.
Spoiler:
I'm pretty sure Mrs. Fairfax knew, and Leah, and probably the other servants.
Mrs. Fairfax would have had to have known as the keeper of stores and her evasive at times bespoke of guilty knowledge. I even think her first tour of the house with Jane
which included a trip to the roof was a deliberate plan to get Jane into earshot of Bertha, display Grace, and account for them before Jane indulged in private speculation about the nutty laugh or went exploring on her own.
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Old 09-04-2017, 12:31 PM   #7
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I remember how, as an adolescent, I bought into the notion of the gothic hero as romantic figure. Now, I can't imagine what I was thinking about Rochester and his ilk; they're cold, condescending, controlling and cruel. Run, Jane!
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Old 09-04-2017, 12:41 PM   #8
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This is one of my favourites. I read it a long time ago and though I don't remember everything (though I did watch the newer film of it with Michael Fassbender a few years ago which refreshed my memory) I still remember how much I enjoyed it. I'm not set to read it again anytime soon (nothing against it; I just haven't come to the point of wanting to do re-reads of favourites yet) but when ever I do it will be interesting to see how the adult me views it compared to the teen me, especially as I did think it very gothically romantic and beautifully melancholic then.
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Old 09-07-2017, 01:11 AM   #9
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Well, I confess, the first 10 chapters of Jane Eyre left me with a profound feeling of 'meh'. Just really slow. But now things are starting to pick up, and the sound of Nadia May is bringing the whole thing to life. I rather think I'm going to enjoy this before I'm done. But still early days, so more later.

(ETA: FWIW, I did try the Thandie Newton narration for several chapters, and it's OK, but it just isn't as compelling as Nadia/Donada/Wanda. But, in counterbalance to that, some portion may be that I've read and loved so many books that she's narrated that I'm automatically predisposed to like any book she's reading.)

Last edited by CRussel; 09-07-2017 at 01:14 AM.
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Old 09-08-2017, 01:51 PM   #10
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“Let me hasten to add that I am not at all like Jane Eyre, who must have given hope to so many plain women who tell their stories in the first person, nor have I ever thought of myself as being like her.”
― Barbara Pym, Excellent Women
Just some notes rather than any coherent thoughts.

I liked Jane Eyre. I didn't really identify with her but at the beginning I rooted for her the way you root for all abused children.

The romance didn't do much for me but I wanted her to be happy and you had the mystery of the strange third floor at Thornfield Hall to keep up interest.

And finally I read on to see how it would all resolve with Jane finding Happiness At Last, because I did want her to be happy and St. John (pronounced Sinjin?) was totally unsuitable.

I found it interesting Bronte used the last words of the New Testament as the last words of the novel.

Spoiler:
It was an interesting choice to end it, not with Jane's happy ending but with St. John's death.
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Old 09-14-2017, 01:06 PM   #11
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Was going along well, enjoying Jane Eyre a lot, but now I've bogged down again. I either need a really long drive, or I'll have to try switching to eBook format. I really was hoping to read this by our 'traditional' start date.
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Old 09-15-2017, 11:52 PM   #12
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I had a stall with Jane Eyre, also - at the point where Mr. Brocklehurst visits the school. I had to divert to reading The Return for a while until I could get back to Jane Eyre.
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Old 09-16-2017, 09:07 AM   #13
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Just starting to get acquainted with Rochester, as he gets acquainted with Jane in a fireside chat. My first thought was that he must have been the model for the male role in the old school Mills & Boon/Harlequin titles.
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Old 09-26-2017, 02:07 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by CRussel View Post
Well, I confess, the first 10 chapters of Jane Eyre left me with a profound feeling of 'meh'. Just really slow. But now things are starting to pick up, and the sound of Nadia May is bringing the whole thing to life. I rather think I'm going to enjoy this before I'm done. But still early days, so more later.

(ETA: FWIW, I did try the Thandie Newton narration for several chapters, and it's OK, but it just isn't as compelling as Nadia/Donada/Wanda. But, in counterbalance to that, some portion may be that I've read and loved so many books that she's narrated that I'm automatically predisposed to like any book she's reading.)
This is good to know. I'm middling in chapter 3. I can see why there was some opposition to this one being the pick. I do have access to one of the audiobook versions. Maybe that would be better.
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Old 09-28-2017, 11:33 PM   #15
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I liked the realism of the characters. These were all flawed human beings for whom I couldn't help but feel empathy even when the roles they were assigned were far from heroic.
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