There is not one page of this absolutely hilarious tale that does not inspire laughter. The somber story of Jane Eyre takes a sarcastic and snarky edge at the hands of The Lady Janies, with the original author as a character finding inspiration for her fiction in her peculiar and often oblivious friend named Jane. The narrators’ asides are as amusing as the characters’ behavior, thoughts and comments, and while readers unfamiliar with the original story will still be entertained, the details of the original become such a farce in this retelling that those who know (and love or hate) the classic romance will be delighted.

Jane is a strange girl with a supernatural awareness, with no greater goal than to become a governess and leave the dreary girls’ school where she is friends with the busy and nosy Charlotte, who carefully commits her observations to paper and asks more questions than a proper young lady of her era should. When Alexander Blackwood of the Royal Society for the Relocation of Wayward Spirits discovers Jane’s affinity for ghostly presences, he is determined to employ her as an agent, but she is more interested in accepting a post at Thornfield Hall working for the dark and brooding Mr. Rochester. Charlotte presses herself into service with Alexander in place of Jane in spite of her own lack of vision, and all manner of mishap and mayhem ensues. (HARPERTEEN, Jul., 464 pp., $17.99, 12 & Up)

Reviewed by: 
Kerry Sutherland