Jane Eyre is a novel written by Charlotte Brontë in 1847. Its gripping language and powerful story make it a compelling read.
Jane Eyre is the main character of the story. The story follows her through her childhood into adulthood. She is always motivated and possesses dignity, as well as being religious. An orphan from early childhood, she develops through the book into a woman in love with her employer, Mr Rochester. He is an ugly, stern but passionate character who loves Jane in return and wants to marry her. Another important character is St. John Rivers, a clergyman who takes Jane in when she is hungry and starving outside of his house. Jane constantly associates Rivers with the terms rock, snow and ice. His sisters, Mary and Diana, become close friends with Jane in the latter half of the book.
The book is introduced by Jane Eyre, who is raised by her aunt, Mrs. Reed. Jane is cruelly and unfairly treated and unhappy with her life. After being locked up in a 'haunted' room for a night, Jane screams and faints. The apothecary thinks she should be sent away to school to have an education, which Mrs. Reed agrees to. Jane Eyre's life at Lowood School is hard and unforgiving. However, she values her education and becomes friends with a strong-minded girl called Helen Burns. An epidemic sweeps through the school one year and Helen dies of tuberculosis, which draws attention to the harsh living conditions that the students go through. The headmaster is therefore replaced and the school becomes a different place. Once into adulthood, Jane gets a job as a governess at Thornfield Manor, where she teaches a French girl named Adele. She slowly finds herself falling in love with Mr. Rochester, her master, who loves her back. They plan to get married until Jane Eyre discovers that Mr. Rochester is already a husband. Keeping her dignity, she flees the Thornfield household with no food or money. As Jane gets rescued by a clergyman and his sisters, she finds a new life as a teacher, but never quite forgets Rochester.
Jane Eyre was written in the 19th century, therefore the language is a bit different to today's. It contains a lot of description to enforce emotional effects that come up in the story. She wrote in a modern style for her time, allowing the reader to get completely tied up in the story. Jane Eyre's chain of thoughts are also described because the book is written in first person. The book contains a lot of themes, such as religion, social class and family, to think about and thought-provoking observations, such as: “Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion. To attack the first is not to assail the last.”
Charlotte Brontë is one of the most well-known Victorian women writers. Jane Eyre is her most famous book and she also wrote poetry.
The book takes a few chapters to get into, but the story captivates the reader with the rich and descriptive language. The plot has unexpected twists and turns thoughout, and it gives an insight as to what life was like in the 1800s. Because of the language and style, I would recommend Jane Eyre to avid readers over the age of 13. I would give this book five out of five stars, because of the unforgettable storyline.