I have to admit, I hadn’t read Charlotte Bronte’s classic novel Jane Eyre until about my third year of University, when I signed up for a literature class called Women in Writing. Did I like Jane Eyre? Liked would be an understatement—I loved it. I spent many nights reading into the early hours of the morning because I couldn’t put the book down. Now, Bronte’s classic gets an erotic twist with Eve Sinclair and thus is renamed: JaneEyreLaidBare.
Why did I buy this novel? Well, curiosity for one, because I have to admit there was a small part of me that wanted to see just how “bare” Jane Eyre would get and how naughty she would be. Did I buy the book right away? No. I mulled it over in my mind for a few days and then went back to the bookstore; for 10 dollars how could I go wrong? So is Jane still the innocent governess that readers love in the classic tale?—not so much. This time, Eyre is a caged bird waiting to be set free from her sexual desires and inner fantasies that burn deep within her. And what does Jane desire most? The touch of a man, which can only be fulfilled by the Earl of Rochester.
Jane Eyre has left behind her days at Lowood, but brings along some very interesting memories, particularly those of a female friend named Emma who became her confidant after Helen Burns died. Her memories of Emma are sexually vivid and I have to admit they shocked me at first when I read the words “remembering that first flicker of her tongue against my bud,” escaping from the lips of sweet, innocent Jane Eyre. Now that Jane is no longer at Lowood and with no female companion to pleasure her, she must find ways to self pleasure, which involve masturbation, using a candle to bring herself to sexual ecstasy to substitute a penis and spying on others in the act of sex. Jane Eyre is one pent-up caged bird that is about ready to explode, and finds herself again on the outskirts of society not only longing to belong but longing to be set free sexually.
Does she finally get set free from her cage and receive the sexual satisfaction that she longs for? Yes, she does, but much like her desire to belong and to be loved in the classic novel, Jane Eyre once again must learn the hard way that once she is set free, her freedom comes with a price and once again Jane Eyre leaves Thornfield. However, there is a twist in the ending that I dare not spoil for those who have not read the book.
Did I like this novel? It was a good read and an interesting spin on the classic tale, but much like Jane Eyre who feels like a caged bird waiting to be set free, I felt the same way when reading the book. I wanted more of the erotic and less of the classic, and it just doesn’t happen. You are waiting for something to happen between Jane and Rochester and when it does it is almost un-fulfilling. The author cages you up like Jane and teases readers with a glimpse of the erotic, but never un-cages her readers to fulfillment. Therefore, I can’t say that I was fully satisfied as a reader. Maybe it is because I was expecting another 50 Shades of Grey and it didn’t happen.
Is the book worth the 10 dollars that I paid? Yes. Is it worthwhile to read? If you want to see a side to Jane Eyre that you probably never thought you would read about, then yes, buy the book and see for yourself. However, if you are one of those people who just can’t stand when classic tales like this are revamped, then maybe you should keep the book caged.