“Reader, I murdered him.”
A sensitive orphan, Jane Steele suffers first at the hands
of her spiteful aunt and predatory cousin, then at a grim
school where she fights for her very life until escaping to
London, leaving the corpses of her tormentors behind her.
After years of hiding from the law while penning macabre
“last confessions” of the recently hanged, Jane thrills at
discovering an advertisement. Her aunt has died and her
childhood home has a new master: Mr. Charles Thornfield, who
seeks a governess.
Burning to know whether she is in fact the rightful heir,
Jane takes the position incognito, and learns that Highgate
House is full of marvelously strange new residents—the
fascinating but caustic Mr. Thornfield, an army doctor
returned from the Sikh Wars, and the gracious Sikh butler
Mr. Sardar Singh, whose history with Mr. Thornfield appears
far deeper and darker than they pretend. As Jane catches
ominous glimpses of the pair’s violent history and falls in
love with the gruffly tragic Mr. Thornfield, she faces a
terrible dilemma: can she possess him—body, soul, and
secrets—without revealing her own murderous past?
A satirical romance about identity, guilt, goodness, and the
nature of lies, by a writer who Matthew Pearl calls
“superstar-caliber” and whose previous works Gillian Flynn
declared “spectacular,” Jane Steele is a brilliant
and deeply absorbing book inspired by Charlotte Brontë’s
classic Jane Eyre.
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