“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”
‘Jane Eyre’ by Charlotte Bronte, a classic novel that has withstood the test of time, has been read, reread and appreciated by many literature and classic novel lovers over the years. It is an extremely rare novel that manages to lure readers by virtue of its charm alone, despite not having much going into it in terms of the overall plot. Despite its complexity, though, the heart and soul of this book is the story of Jane Eyre, a principled young woman who has seen a lot of suffering.
Charlotte Bronte was an English novelist and poet, eldest of three sisters who were also famous novelists. ‘Jane Eyre’ is her most impactful novel which she released in the year 1847. Charlotte Bronte faced a lot of difficulties in her life and she found a way to express her grief and come out of it through writing. She died at the age of 38, with her unborn child, due to suspected phthisis. Her novel, ‘Jane Eyre’ has caught the attention of many critics and literature patrons.
The plot of the book talks about how Jane Eyre, an orphan of no beauty, wealth, or social standing, is taken in by her relatives, the Reeds, who treat her with contempt and even cruelty. When she’s old enough Jane is sent to Lowood School, much to her relief. But the food is foul, several of the teachers are cruel, and sanitation is so bad that an epidemic causes several deaths among the pupils. A ray of light brightens Jane’s life in the form of Helen, her best friend but Helen succumbs to the epidemic while Jane survives. Jane continues in Lowood for eight years, six as a student and two as a teacher. She yearns for a change and takes up a job as a governess to Adele Varens, the ward of the master of Thornfield, Edward Rochester, a dark, brooding Byronic man living in a seemingly haunted house. Jane finds herself falling secretly in love with Mr Rochester and when he proposes to her, surprising her, she accepts willingly. Their wedding ceremony is stopped short when a man interrupts them claiming that Rochester is already married. Jane decides to leave him and flees, penniless and struggling since she feels humiliated. The events that follow lead to a series of discoveries, tales of empathy and friendship, struggles faced by a woman, Jane’s dilemma, misfortunes that befall Mr Rochester after Jane leaves him and the latent yet passionate love between Jane and Mr Rochester.
I do not have a particular genre of books that I prefer over others and hence, I decided to read this timeless classic, having received many positive reviews about it. What struck me the most about this novel is the style of writing used by Bronte, which combines a certain authenticity with good quality writing.The manner in which Bronte has explicitly explained what all Jane underwent made me feel that I was a part of Jane’s story as I leafed through the pages. The book taught me a lot about friendship, empathy, patience and love. Jane’s character impressed me the most. Despite her social powerlessness Jane is one of the strongest women characters in fiction and by sticking to her principles she is rewarded with true love. This book, I believe brings out the struggles faced by a woman and her will to overcome them. It is one of the most powerful novels written by one of the most prolific classic writers. To me, it is an inspirational novel that each person perceives in his or her own way. I feel that this timeless classic is a must read for all those literature and classic loves out there and also those who want to be introduced to the world of classic literature.
I HEPP ‘N’