If you want to engage with a novel that is truly timeless in its appeal, then look no farther than this classic. Inexplicably, this work is often found in the Children’s Fiction section. This is incongruous, as Jane Eyre is very definitely a book for grown-ups. Was there ever a more resilient heroine than Jane? The device of using the first person narrative adds a sense of intimacy and insight for the reader, as we are drawn into Jane’s world, a world in which she is completely alone. Jane has no support from others and has to survive on her own resources. From a feminist perspective, there is much to admire in Jane, she has a strong sense of herself and remains true to her own beliefs and principles, regardless of the consequences. While the narrative has a very gothic trajectory, the heroine’s approach to her challenges feels very modern. Charlotte Bronte had an astonishing ability to create a story in which what matters is, not what happens to the protagonist, but rather how she triumphs over adversity, and triumph she does.
I would urge anyone who hasn’t engaged with Jane Eyre, or who hasn’t read it in years, to immerse themselves in the world of Jane; a small quiet person, whose indomitable spirit wins out over all the obstacles life throws at her.
You can reserve a copy online at South Dublin Libraries’ catalogue here.