Title: Jane Steele
Author: Lyndsay Faye
Pages: 432 Pages
Reader, I murdered him.’ JANE STEELE is a brilliant Gothic retelling of JANE EYRE from Edgar-nominated Lyndsay Faye, for fans of LONGBOURN and PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES.
Like the heroine of the novel she adores, Jane Steele suffers cruelly at the hands of her aunt and schoolmaster. And like Jane Eyre, they call her wicked – but in her case, she fears the accusation is true. When she flees, she leaves behind the corpses of her tormentors.
A fugitive navigating London’s underbelly, Jane rights wrongs on behalf of the have-nots whilst avoiding the noose. Until an advertisement catches her eye. Her aunt has died and the new master at Highgate House, Mr Thornfield, seeks a governess. Anxious to know if she is Highgate’s true heir, Jane takes the position and is soon caught up in the household’s strange spell. When she falls in love with the mysterious Charles Thornfield, she faces a terrible dilemma: can she possess him – body, soul and secrets – and what if he discovers her murderous past?
Oh boo. I really wanted to like Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye. I genuinely did. My favourite book is Jane Eyre and so I thought that a book that had so many links to the Bronte classic would naturally be loved by me but it wasn’t.
I have to give kudos to Faye because her style of writing is on point. She continues the selected style throughout the text and never wavers. I think for someone writing outside of the pre-Victorian time period that can be difficult but she manages it excellently. However, I did find the tone to be very glib. The satirical style almost became too jarring.
Jane Steele is a well rounded mystery and Faye masterfully weaves a tale of intrigue but it just didn’t tick all of my boxes.
Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye is available now.
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