My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows
February 21, 2019
If you are a die hard fan of Jane Eyre and all things Brontë, this book is not for you. However, if you enjoy a silly and farcical retelling, then My Plain Jane might just be your new favorite book. The story begins at Lowood school shortly after the death of Mr. Brocklehurst. Many of the characters are the same and the skeleton of the story is a match. However, in this version Charlotte Brontë attends school along with Jane Eyre. Jane can see ghosts and is currently being recruited to join the Society for the Relocation of Wayward Spirits.
When Jane goes to be a governess, Charlotte and her new friend Alexander Blackwood follow to convince Jane to join the Society. All that follows is romance, misunderstandings, and gothic comedy. This is a comic and silly story on its own, but readers familiar with Jane Eyre will get the most out of the book. If I were still teaching high school English, I would definitely assign this book immediately following the classic Brontë novel. It is perfect comic relief after the somber gothic tale.