My Plain Jane (The Lady Janies #2), by Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, & Brodi Ashton
Publish Date: June 26, 2018
Published by: HarperTeen
Genre: YA Historical Fiction/Retelling
My Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 out of 5 stars)
**I received an egalley of this from the publisher through Edelweiss in return for an honest review.**
You may think you know the story. After a miserable childhood, penniless orphan Jane Eyre embarks on a new life as a governess at Thornfield Hall. There, she meets one dark, brooding Mr. Rochester. Despite their significant age gap (!) and his uneven temper (!!), they fall in love—and, Reader, she marries him. (!!!)
Or does she?
Prepare for an adventure of Gothic proportions, in which all is not as it seems, a certain gentleman is hiding more than skeletons in his closets, and one orphan Jane Eyre, aspiring author Charlotte Brontë, and supernatural investigator Alexander Blackwood are about to be drawn together on the most epic ghost hunt this side of Wuthering Heights.
To be thruthful, I wasn’t even sure I was actually going to be reading the egalley of this any time soon. I haven’t read My Lady Jane yet and I just read another Jane Eyre retelling last month, so I was afraid I wasn’t going to be interested in this one. But from the prologue onwards I was hooked. This book is bright, funny, unique, and just an all out blast to read. I absolutely loved the use of Charlotte Brontë as a character in the book, and actually found myself more invested in her and Alexander’s storylines than in Jane’s. The whole ghost thing was an excellent addition to the story (and I love how Helen was basically the voice of reason for everything). It really changed a lot of the original novel, creating a completely new story with different twists and turns and characters.
This book had me laughing out loud often, with many references to modern-day pop culture and character remarks that were just hilarious. I will say the writing felt a little rushed at times, and I felt like I was missing out on some more details that could have been given at times. But it was a fun read that kept me captivated the whole time, and left me unwilling to put it down sometimes.
A definite recommendation for anyone who enjoys a good, fun story that involves retellings, ghosts, romance, and pre-Victorian England.