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Mr. Rochester by Sarah Shoemaker
Age Range: Adult | Hardcover: 464 pages | Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; 1 edition (May 9, 2017)
Words can’t express the depth of my love for this book. Jane Eyre is one of my all-time favorite novels, so when Hachette Book Group offered me a copy of Mr. Rochester, I couldn’t turn it down.
I easily fell into this story and got lost in the life of young Edward Rochester. I thought about the story constantly while I wasn’t reading, and couldn’t wait to pick the book up again.
If you’re a Jane Eyre fan, you absolutely MUST read this book! I fell head-over-heels in love with this story, with the man Jane loved. It left me with that same heart-rending-yet-happy feeling the original story gave me. This book is going on my shelf of favorites and will definitely be read again.
Here’s what I loved about Mr. Rochester
I knew how it would end.
This may strike you as odd (but hey, I AM odd. So what?) but I loved that I knew the ending before I even started. I’m one of those oddballs who reads the last page first, so knowing the outcome ruined nothing for me. In fact, it made me love the story all the more. Since I knew how the story ends, I had no fear of a disappointing ending, or of being left in the lurch with loose ends everywhere.
I Got to Understand Edward Better.
Jane Eyre is a wonderful story, but it only tells us Jane’s version of things. Mr. Rochester gave me history and insight into the mysterious man she falls in love with. His deception, his gruffness, and his passionate love for Jane are products of his life experiences and his desire for companionship. I feel like I got to know the real Edward Rochester, as he would be in real life. Smart, vibrant, and far too trusting until life and betrayal turn him into the cynical and stern man we all know.
I’m going to be honest here. I knew nothing about Jamaica, it’s settlement, or the slave trade there before picking up this book. Obviously, this is a work of fiction, but Jamaica is real and its complex history is hinted at in the pages of Mr. Rochester.
One of my favorite parts of this book is Mr. Rochester’s time in Jamaica. It’s so different from England, and he deals with issues, people, and situations that he wouldn’t run into in his home country. This is the part of the book where his choices, or lack of them, reap lasting consequences—where we see the beginnings of the man Jane falls for. It’s the first time that Edward grapples with indecision, frustration, and heartache. For Edward, Jamaica is where he becomes his own man.
The Evolution of Edward Fairfax Rochester.
Edward was a trusting, obedient boy who never thought to question his father. His younger years were spent pining after affection, but he never received any. I loved his time at school and his friendships with the other boys there—Touch and Carrot.
As life progresses, he places his trust too easily in people who should have his best interests at heart. As a result, he walks naively into a situation that alters the rest of his life. A string of bad choices, poor circumstances, and a heart too big and too desperate for love lead Edward to become the surly man we met in Jane Eyre.
I CRIED at the end. I knew how it would end, and still, I cried. Mr. Rochester searched his whole life for an equal, a true companion to share his life and love with. He finds it in little Jane Eyre, only to have his elusive happiness torn away from him once again. Then, just as he’s about to give up hope, Jane walks back into his life.
Oh, the feels!
It probably helped that I already love this story, but reading it from Rochester’s point of view pulled at my heartstrings in unexpected ways.
“Reader, she married me.” – p. 446
Cue the waterworks! 😭
This book left me feeling satisfied and happy in a way that only a great book can.
(That’s me in the drawing, by the way. 😁)
It was SO GOOD! I loved every page of Mr. Rochester and I can’t wait to read it again. I’m suffering from a major book hangover, so it might happen sooner rather than later.
If you’re a fan of Jane Eyre, this book is a must-read.
This cover is perfect for this book. It’s modern, yet has that antique feel to it that puts me right back in the woods of Thornfield. It promises exactly what it is, the story of Edward’s life and his side of the romance we all adore.
There is a small amount of language, including a few f-bombs (about three), slavery, and non-descriptive sex.
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Other Books Mentioned in This Post
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
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