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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
sarah1979

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

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I'm really glad that you feel that way too pontalba :D  Also, you put it much more succinctly than I did. :smile:

 

 

Well, at least we are not completely alone with this opinion vodkafan, but sadly I still feel that we are a small minority.

 

Oh, piffle.  Your post was on target. :)

Thought I would put 'my pennyworth' [my say] in at this point! I didn't like Jane Eyre, and I have read it three times at different ages to see if it was an age thing.I was bored, more than anything, and found Jane very wet as a character.However, books do divide people, It's extremely well written. I loved Wuthering Heights even though Cathy was a mad selfish character.I used to play on Haworth moors when I was a child, very near the farm used for Wuthering Heights [the farm was actually called Top Withens.]Once, in Winter [it always had snow, it was a very high up place] I fell half way down the steep Haworth High St.but being a child and in snow, I was ok just a case of hurt pride!It's certainly a bleak place there on the moors, but Haworth itself [i took my children there to visit 20 years ago] is a tourist trap!You could very likely get a cappucino there nowadays in Brontes-To- Go [only joking!]The Black Bull pub was still there then [the pub where Branwell Bronte drank himself to an early death.]

 

Ahhh, hah!  You've proven what a poster on a forum, long ago and far away said to me some years ago!  She claimed that readers that enjoyed Jane Eyre tended to dislike Wuthering Heights.  At the time I had not read WH, so was in no position to judge one way or the other.  A few years ago I finally got around to reading WH, and frankly, had trouble finishing.  While it certainly is not necessary to "like" characters, one shouldn't want to shake and slap them at every turn, and absolutely dislike them so intensely one can hardly pick up the book.  I could not find one redeeming character, or one redeeming trait in any of the lot of them. 

 

Now, I have loved Jane Eyre since first reading at about 10 or 11 years old.  Of course I didn't understand all of it at that age, but I burned with indignation for Jane's mistreatment at the hands of her guardian/aunt, and loved the relationship she had with the little girl....daughter (?) of Rochester, and her generosity and love for Helen Burns.  Of course in rereading as a teenager and then as an adult broadened my views on other matters. 

 

Anyhow, I'm so tickled to hear your views on WH, and your stories of playing on those very moors! Thanks. :)

Substance alone is rare, let alone how beneficent, is it not? and to go all googly over it wherever found, with any hope of continued mutual interaction of it is likely more than enough grounds for eternal marital bliss.  Am I wrong?  And I don't think the 'wife' you refer to is protrayed in any way as reconcilable to such a role.  Wasn't it the greed of her family to try to ultimate gain Rochester's wealth that initial impeded him, and wasn't it clear that he would have taken care of her as best as anyone in the world could have whatever the case.  Maybe I'm not understanding something.

 

Absolutely.  It was indeed the greed of not only her family, but Rochester's father.

 

BTW, how do you activate the spoiler alert function?

 

Click the third from the left little square (Special BBCode) at the top of the reply box, click down the menu and choose "Spoiler".   Type the spoilery bits into the box that appears.  Ta daaaa!

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Finished Emma.  Satisfying.  Like Much Ado About Nothing, As You Like It, Twelveth Night and Midsummer's Night Dream, but less base and much richer .  And Jane does at least one thing better than Charlotte.  She writes satisfying endings.  As I mentioned earlier, the ending to Charlotte's Villette is unacceptable to me--but just the ending.  And all of Jane's I've read (P&P, Persuasion and Emma), end better than J.E,, though I loved it best.  And entirely unlike Thomas' Tess because I wanted to burn the book.  Though I am significantly into a couple his others, (The Mayor of Casterbridge, Far from the Madding Crowd), that I have enjoyed so far.  Waiting forTess to get foggy before I go back to them. Just bought S&S.  Jane's first.  But I'm eventually going to need some recommendations from people who (though enjoyed reading it) HATED Wuthering Heights--I mean I just don't get into being beat with sticks--but LOVED all of Charlotte's and Jane's magic.  Already out of Charlotte, and running out of Jane.

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I'm afraid I'm one of those that love Rochester! I think his relationship with Jane is kind of romantic. He wanted to do what he felt was honorable by taking care of his first wife but then Jane made him love again.

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Ahhh, hah!  You've proven what a poster on a forum, long ago and far away said to me some years ago!  She claimed that readers that enjoyed Jane Eyre tended to dislike Wuthering Heights.

 

The word 'tended' is important there - it might well be true in general terms. However, I rate both JE and WH as real favourites, so it's not universal. They are certainly very different books, even if the passion is present in both (although it would be hard for anything to have quite the emotional rawness of WH!).

Edited by willoyd

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The word 'tended' is important there - it might well be true in general terms. However, I rate both JE and WH as real favourites, so it's not universal. They are certainly very different books, even if the passion is present in both (although it would be hard for anything to have quite the emotional rawness of WH!).

Rawness?  That's euphemistic at least.  Try cruelty. No, savagery. And the best result of all the 'rawness' is appropriately 'marked' and observed by the story's entirely detached passerby in the end.  And hope only comes by forgetting it all.

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Oh Jane Eyre, one of my all-time favourites.  I read Wide Sargasso Sea as well and I did quite enjoy it but it's very different from Jane Eyre of course as they were written so far apart.

 

Wuthering Heights is another amazing book - and Agnes Grey and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte,

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As it's Charlotte's 200th birthday later this month (next week I think) I'm re-reading this, I rarely re-read books and haven't read it for about 20 years!

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I listen to Open Book on BBC Radio 4, and they were discussing a new anthology of short stories based on characters from Jane Eyre, edited by Tracy Chevalier called Reader, I Married Him (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Reader-Married-Him-Tracy-Chevalier/dp/0008150575/) which has been released to coincide with the anniversary too.  I don't think I'll rush out and buy it in hardback, but I will put it on my wishlist for when the paperback comes out, or perhaps I might try and get it from the library. :)

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I've almost finished reading JE now, and whilst it seems much more wordy than I remember it, I'm still enjoying the main story.  Mr R is still my favourite literary character (beats Darcy by a mile, although North and South's John Thornton comes quite close ;) ) and I know much has been written about his treatment of his first wife I think he did the best for her that he could under the circumstances ie he made sure she was kept as safe as she could be, was looked after and fed, rather than being shoved away in some awful asylum.  I do think he was a bit naïve in thinking that he could get away with a bigamous marriage though, and he under-estimated Jane there - a man having a mistress was one thing, but he hadn't counted on her scruples.  I agree that there is perhaps a slight air of martyrdom about Jane, and the weak spot is probably the coincidence that she should find out she's related to the Rivers (an instant family!) and then inherits all that money (20K, a lot of money back then) - that does seem very contrived.  But St John Rivers, what a nightmare of a man - a true religious fanatic and sociopath, he sounds awful, worse than I remembered him :o .  Just gearing up for the ending now.... :D

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Glad you are enjoying it again Madeleine!.

I think that JE highlights a very big problem that real women had in those days- They could not date and try a few different men on for size. I agree St John Rivers was completely detestable, and compared to him Rochester is the better of the two, but really neither of them were who she needed to be with. 

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There have been a few programmes on the BBC about the Brontës recently, and there was one about all the television adaptations of their various novels, and I can't believe there have been so many of Jane Eyre. I still like the Ruth Wilson and Toby Stevens version that was a BBC miniseries a few years ago, but I would like to see the Michael Fassbender film that came out a couple of years ago, although I understand it veers from the original novel.

 

I think I'm going to re-read Jane Eyre again before I read the Reader, I Married Him book I mentioned in an earlier post. I'd quite like to re-read Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys too.

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I read The Professor first before I read Jane Eyre. Mr. Rochester reminded me of William's Crimsworth in The Professor. 

 

I remember feeling broken-hearted that Mr. Rochester was already married. I love the playful bantering between Mr. Rochester and Jane. I read those parts repeatedly. The parts where they got separated for awhile was quite dull though (when Jane had to go back to care for her ill aunt and the part after Jane ran away from Mr. Rochester).

 

If I am not mistaken, Bronte wrote The Professor first before she wrote Jane Eyre. The Professor got rejected multiple times and was published post-humously. If you love Jane Eyre. I think you would like The Professor just as well.  I actually prefer The Professor even more. Shirley is also another very good novel of Bronte... but somehow Jane Eyre became the most populour of her novels. 

 

I recommend Anne Bronte's novel The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. Actually in some ways, Anne Bronte is even better than Charlotte Bronte. 

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I remember feeling broken-hearted that Mr. Rochester was already married.  

 

It didn't seem to bother Mr Rochester too much!

I will check out the Professor, I was not aware of that one thanks

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It didn't seem to bother Mr Rochester too much!

I will check out the Professor, I was not aware of that one thanks

 

I disagree.  I believe it tortured him, endlessly.  He was desperately unhappy.   Unhappy only describes the very upper edge of his feelings, imo.  He was torn between his sense of obligation to a woman that he'd been tricked into marrying that was unstable to say the least, and the natural desire for some sort of happiness in life.

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On 2009-3-5 at 10:24 PM, sarah1979 said:

Is it possible to fall in love with a book character because if it is then Mr Rochester gets my vote!

 

Totally possible... Gilbert Blythe in Anne of Green Gables gets my vote!

 

Anyway, I first read Jane Eyre when I was in my early teens (I think) so a good 20 odd years ago and it is still the only 'classic' that I have ever managed to read.  I loved it when I read it the first time and have always wanted to re-read it but there was always a little part of me that was worried that I wouldn't love it as much now that I'm older.  A few weeks ago I was flicking through the channels on the television and came across one of the many film versions (can't remember which one now) and it really got me hankering after the book again.  So I treated myself to a brand new copy of it - I do still have my original version somewhere but wanted a nice new fresh copy - and I read it over the weekend.  I am happy to report that I loved it just as much second time around as I did the first, if not more so because I'm older and wiser and understand it a bit better now.

 

At the same time I purchased the book I also picked up a copy of the 2011 movie version with Michael Fassbender as Rochester and watched it Sunday night (after finishing the book) and I'd totally recommend it too.

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2 hours ago, Autumn said:

At the same time I purchased the book I also picked up a copy of the 2011 movie version with Michael Fassbender as Rochester and watched it Sunday night (after finishing the book) and I'd totally recommend it too.

 

I wached that a few weeks ago, and thought it was pretty good too.  I still like the Ruth Wilson and Toby Stevens BBC adaptation from a few years back too. :)

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