"If all the world hated you, and believed you wicked, while your own conscience approved you, and absolved you from guilt, you would not be without friends."
Even if the writing was sometimes over-dramatic, I thought for the most part it was really good! Of course, the dialogue is archaic, but most of it was quite realistic. I especially liked the dialogue between Jane and Mr. Rochester. They are obviously very much in love, but they aren't gooey lovers. No, they're both very candid and honest with each other, and that makes the gooey stuff they do say seem all the more sincere. Of course, it's not all romance. There's also plenty of suspense, and a lot of spiritual-Christian-y stuff. I like the way the Christian themes were handled in this book. You've got your strict, Pharisee types, like Mr. Brocklehurst, and St. John Rivers (Pronounced: 'Sinjin', but I call him 'Slimjim'), and then you have people like Helen Burns who are the model of who a good Christian should act. Well, I don't think it would be sinful to stand up for yourself a little, but you can see how Helen 'saved' Jane from a bitterness that was growing inside her as a child. So Helen is kind of like Bishop Myriel from Les Miserables. They're both only in the story for a little bit, but they create a positive, life-long change in the hero.
The Verdict: B+
So, despite the fact that James from Orchestra advised me to stop reading this book and burn it because 'nothing happens', I found Jane Eyre a pretty good read. It's moderately paced, well-written (massive coincidences and goofiness aside), with interesting characters to boot! It's not one of my favorite books, but I certainly liked it, and look forward to reading it again. :)