Confession: This library chick does not get, nor does she like, Austen or the Bronte sisters and Emily Dickinson for good measure. I don’t really give a flying flip about Mr. Darcy, Emma or Heathcliff (although I do like Odie-hiyo!). I read Cliff Notes shamelessly in high school, Spark Notes throughout my et cetera college career and fell asleep during Gwyneth and Keira’s turns as busybodys Emma and Elizabeth. I do love Clueless (although it’s a bit icky that Cher gets with her stepbrother (excuse me: EX step brother), Ella Enchanted (no it’s not Bronte or Austen but I love the modernization of it) and others like it that I cannot think of as I type. The modernization of Jane Eyre appealed to me as a bit of a gateway book: something I could read to encourage me to read the original (it hasn’t but c’est la vie!)and the author lives in my neck of the woods.
In April Lindner’s Jane, we find Jane Moore taking a job as a nanny for rockstar Nico Rathburn as she is unable to pay for school due to the untimely death of her parents. She is thrown into what I can only call a dysfunctional life. Nico is a spoiled rock star used to getting whatever he wants, ignoring his small child and drawing Jane into a chaotic household. Like Mr. Rochester, he is hiding a batty wife in his attic, a batty wife who on more than one occasion escapes her caregiver and causes a dangerous home life. Jane is estranged from her family; they’ve never really ‘got her’ and as a child she was ignored by her mother, abused by her brother. After the death of the parents, Jane is forced to fend for herself as her self involved sister (who is desperate to land a rich husband) and brother (who stole and drank whatever money the parents had left to their children) go about their own lives.
Here are my nitpicking thoughts:
As a parent, I will be doggoned if I let my kid be around a junky, druggie who on more than one occasion tried to to mortal harm to me! Yet Nico allows his wife to live in his house because he doesn’t want to put his batty wife in a home because the press and tabloids will expose his secret.
Plus the ‘caregiver’ that he entrusts his wife with hs let the woman escape from the attic on more than one occasion, occasion ebough to cause a fire while his young child slept in the house!
Jane never heard of financial aid?
I know student loans are a bitch to pay back but really? Take a job in that nutty family?
Overall I enjoyed the book, read it in a few days. I shared it with Pop and another teen who devours books. I still won’t be reading the original but will present this along with the original for some of the teens that are reluctant to try it out.