Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Released: March 22nd, 2016
Genre: Gothic, mystery
Source: Review copy from publisher
A reimagining of Jane Eyre as a gutsy, heroic serial killer.
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?
A satirical romance about identity, guilt, goodness, and the nature of lies.
I wanted to love this book SO MUCH. I really did. And I did love parts of it. But other parts, not so much. This felt like two different book mushed in to one and it didn’t always work for me.
The first part of the book, before she becomes a governess, was beyond kick-ass. Jane is a straight-forward kind of heroine who doesn’t have a problem getting rid of her problems, be they human or not. This part of the plot was AWESOME. She would fit in quite nicely with the ladies of Chicago’s Cell Block Tango. She’s wicked but still has her own moral compass and I love that about her.
When she takes the job as governess, the story stagnates a bit. If fact, it felt like a different book to me. While it was enjoyable, I really missed the sass of Jane from earlier in the book.
The writing was pitch perfect for the plots and really added to the tone of the book and the gothic feel. I have such high respect for an author who can write in a certain style like this.
Despite my issues with some of the plot, this was a really cool read.